Department emergency environmental response team aids St. Louis County following acid spill

For more information: 573-751-1010
Volume 37-047 For Immediate Release: Feb. 20, 2009

JEFFERSON CITY, MO, -- The Missouri Department of Natural Resources dispatched an environmental emergency response team Friday to aid in the containment of nearly 4,000 gallons of acid released at a drinking water treatment plant located in Chesterfield.

The department's Environmental Emergency Response section was contacted Friday morning by Missouri American Water, plant owner, concerning the release of approximately 4,000 gallons of hydrofluorosilicic acid from a tanker truck that was delivering it to the plant.

The plant, located at 901 Hog Hollow Road, is on the banks of the Missouri River. The released acid, which is used to fluoridate drinking water, flowed into a Stormwater sewer that empties into the river. A state on-scene coordinator from the department's environmental response station in Eureka assisted the Chesterfield Fire Department to contain the spill in the storm sewer and prevent it from entering the river.

The release occurred when a valve on the truck, which is owned by Quality Carriers, Tampa, Fla., failed just as the transfer had started. The driver was reportedly exposed and taken to a hospital for treatment. The company has hired Environmental Restoration, an environmental contractor from St. Louis, to assist in the cleanup.

The Environmental Emergency Response section is called to the scene of more than 300 emergencies each year, including fires, traffic accidents, leaking storage tanks and other incidents that could have a negative environmental impact. The department's 24-hour spill line receives more than 1,600 incident reports annually.

To report an environmental emergency, including fuel spills, please contact the spill line at 573-634-2436. For more information contact the Missouri Department of Natural Resources at 800-361-4827 or 573-751-3443, or visit the department's Web page at