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Chlorine leak triggered Tuesday’s advisory in North Tonawanda

NORTH TONAWANDA – A minor chlorine leak at the North Tonawanda wastewater treatment plant at 830 River Road Tuesday night prompted authorities to close roads around the plant and advise residents to keep their windows closed for several hours.

North Tonawanda firefighters and police secured the scene and Hazmat teams from the Niagara County Sheriff’s Office and the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station were sent to the plant as a precaution.

Bill Davignon, North Tonawanda’s superintendent of water and wastewater, reported less than a pound of chlorine was released into the plant when an chlorine cylinder with a faulty seal was being installed late Tuesday night. The plant’s alarm system began ringing as the worker quickly shut down valves around the cylinder to stop the leak and followed plant protocol and called 911.

Only two workers were in the plant at the time of the leak and the plant returned to full operation by about 12:30 a.m. Wednesday, Davignon said.

Wednesday North Tonawanda Mayor Arthur G. Pappas lauded the quick work by fire, police and Hazmat teams and the plant workers. The mayor stressed that the city’s drinking water was never jeopardized by the leak in the wastewater treatment plant.

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