Tyson pork plant in Storm Lake, IA evacuated after ammonia leak
Courtesy: Storm Lake Police Department
STORM LAKE, IA (KTIV) -
Storm Lake Fire and Police departments were called to the Tyson Pork Plant at 1009 Richland Drive for an ammonia leak inside the plant at 3:09 a.m. Tuesday.
Police said upon arrival plant workers said a large amount of ammonia was leaking in the area of the cut floor.
Approximately 230 employees were safely evacuated from the plant.
Tyson staff said control valves to the ammonia system had been closed by maintenance staff as they exited the building but a large amount of residual gas vapor remained.
Tyson’s Hazardous Materials Team wearing protective gear entered the plant to ensure all other valves were secured in order to further isolate any leak and they remained to monitor gas concentrations until the conditions were safe for employees to re-enter the plant.
Storm Lake Fire and Police units were placed around the plant controlling access.
They continued to monitor any excessive ammonia that could escape from the plant in a concentrated form.
An investigation determined that a fan on a refrigeration unit had broken causing it to strike a condenser coil in the refrigeration unit, causing the leak.
No injuries were reported and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources was notified of the incident.
The fire and police departments were on scene for approximately three hours and were assisted at the scene by the Buena Vista County Paramedics and Tyson staff.