May 21, 2012| CTVNews.ca | Shared as an educational material
Police fear a community’s drinking water may have been compromised when a truck transporting formaldehyde overturned on a northeastern Ontario highway Monday.
A tanker carrying the chemical was travelling east on Highway 63 in North Bay when it entered a ditch near Silver Lady Lane, according to Ontario Provincial Police.
Const. Shawn Fougere of the OPP’s North Bay detachment said formaldehyde began to spill from the truck, turning the crash into a public health concern.
“There has been a possible breach of the drinking water supply,” he told CTV Toronto.ca in a Monday morning phone interview.
Representatives from the Ministry of the Environment, local health authorities and “dangerous goods” experts are on scene, said Fougere.
Police protocol dictates that a half-mile area around the chemical spill must be evacuated, he added. The OPP is in the process of reaching out to North Bay residents.
According to OPP, the driver of the tanker sustained life-threatening injuries in the accident and has been transported to hospital.
Fougere said it’s unclear where the tanker was from or headed, but noted the truck was driving toward Quebec at the time of the crash.