Hazmat crews headed to Bellflower and briefly considered evacuating a mobile home park around noon on Tuesday when someone discovered barrels of liquid that were putting off higher-than-normal levels of radiation.
The barrels contained the radioactive chemical Thorium and were being stored in a garage or shed at 9600 E. Alondra Blvd., according to authorities. At some point, the barrels had been exposed to sunlight while they were being moved, and on Thursday, one of them ruptured, Los Angeles County Fire Inspector Gustavo Medina said.
After finding the barrels, authorities were going to evacuate the nearby mobile home park but decided there was no risk to the public after assessing the situation, according to Medina.
Around 2:30 p.m., Fire Department crews handed the scene over to the Environmental Protection Agency, which will handle any further cleanup or investigation, Medina said.
HAZMAT Incident: 9600 E Alondra Blvd. #Bellflower #FS98 Units on scene reporting unknown liquid with higher than normal radiological reading inside of a outbuilding and lot. @LASDHQ Evacuating a nearby trailer park. This is now the #AlondraIC @EPA is also on scene
— LACounty Fire PIO (@LACoFDPIO) July 31, 2018
This story has been updated with more details about the incident.
Jeremiah Dobruck is the breaking news editor of the Long Beach Post. Reach him at [email protected] or @jeremiahdobruck on Twitter.
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