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Roads reopen after chemical fire on McBrien Road Thursday evening

UPDATE: The Chattanooga Fire Department says incident command has deemed the scene safe.


An environmental cleanup company, Hepaco, has been called in to evaluate the scene and begin the clean up efforts.


Chattanooga Fire says that their preliminary investigation indicates that an initial leak from containers inside the truck caused a chemical reaction and resulted in the fire.

Public safety agencies are working with Hepaco to support containment and cleanup efforts.


Interstate 24 has reopened and families are able to return to their homes.


South Terrace between McBrien Road and Spring Creek Road will remain closed. The shopping center will also be closed.

PREVIOUS STORY: Residents are being evacuated after a tractor trailer hauling organic peroxide and sodium hydroxide caught fire on McBrien Road Thursday night.


The Chattanooga Fire Department said in a news release that when organic peroxide and sodium hydroxide burn, they release vapors that could be harmful and could cause skin irritation and respiratory issues.


It happened near the AMC theater off of Interstate 24.


Due to the potentially dangerous side effects of the chemicals, a mandatory evacuation was ordered for residents within half a mile of the fire.


A crash truck from the Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport responded to the scene with a piercing nozzle that punctured the trailer and injected foam into the truck to help extinguish the fire.


TDOT brought 80 tons of dirt to stop any runoff as officials continue working to address environmental concerns. The EPA is headed to the scene to oversee the cleanup process.


A public shelter has been opened at the Brainerd Community Center.


Clean up will take a while and will cause major traffic delays along I-24. Commuters are urged to take alternate routes.