The dark cloud of vapour near Lawrence Avenue East and Beechgrove Drive has now dissipated.
Nine fire trucks, 50 firefighters and many police officers and EMS responders answered the call at 11:30 a.m. today at Chemtura Corporation, where an overflow of sulphuric acid vapour from chemical scrubbers escaped into the air.
Sirens went off in the area warning residents that shelters for evacuees were available. Firefighters knocked door-to-door warning residents to stay inside.
“I could hear a lot of sirens so I stepped outside to see what was going on,” eyewitness Markus Agur said. “I asked a firefighter and he told me that there had been a sulphuric acid spill and that I should stay indoors for the rest of the day.”
The overflow has been completely contained, authorities say.
“Everybody is attuned to that warning sound,” said Lorne Buckingham, Toronto Fire division commander. “When you get into a situation like this, you get police doing road closures in the area, EMS setting up stations, police looking after notifications of schools and residents.
“It’s a really great system when you look at all the agencies coming together to work as one.”