Nitric acid spill forced detours on I-65

WLFI File Photo
WLFI File Photo

JASPER COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) – Indiana State Police responded to a crash Monday night on Interstate 65 in Jasper County involving nitric acid which spilled onto the interstate.

Troopers said the crash affected both north and southbound lanes of I-65 near mile-marker 227, three miles south of the Roselawn exit.

Troopers said a semi tanker transporting nitric acid driven by Larry Elsass, 57, of Wapakoneta, Ohio drove off the interstate and into the median. The semi jackknifed and came to rest on the drivers’ side. Nitric acid was lost from the trailer.

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health says nitric acid is corrosive and its vapor can irritate the eyes, nose, throat and skin.

Authorities report that the semi driver and a trooper involved were both taken to a Crown Point hospital to be checked for exposure to nitric acid fumes. They have both been treated and released.

Indiana State Police said the interstate was closed for approximately 14 hours while hazardous materials teams from various fire departments and the Indiana Department of Environmental Management cleaned up the spill.

Troopers said the investigation is ongoing. But at this time, authorities believe neither drugs or alcohol were contributing factors in the crash.

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