Injuries, chemical spill in pile-up on major Ontario highway
A crash involving at least 30 vehicles on a major highway east of Toronto caused a chemical spill on Tuesday, prompting police to evacuate the area.
Police say no one was reported killed in the crash that happened in poor weather at about 2 p.m. ET near Lansdowne, Ont. People in need of medical attention were sent to hospitals in Kingston and Brockville.
Ontario Provincial Police Const. Sandra Barr says the pile-up on Highway 401 east of Kingston, Ont., involved cars and about a dozen transport trucks.
Barr says one of the transport trucks was leaking a toxic substance, but she could not confirm what the substance was.
Barr says five firefighters, three police officers and 17 civilians were taken to nearby hospitals to begin the decontamination process.
She says one person was injured and taken to hospital by ambulance, but she did not know the extent of the injuries.
Kingston General Hospital says it was told to expect about 10 people, including one person in critical condition, but gave no more details.
Residences around the highway did not have to be evacuated, Barr says, adding that the evacuation was only applied to the highway and the people involved in the crash.
The crash occurred in the eastbound lanes, but the highway was closed in both directions around the collision site. Barr says it could be hours before the highway reopens.
She says a cattle truck involved on the pile-up is also still on scene as crews wait for another truck to transport the animals.
Despite the poor weather conditions, including icy roads and blowing snow, Barr says before the crash, officers were trying to stop one motorist speeding at about 160 kilometres an hour on the highway, which has a 100-kilometre per hour limit. She says that incident was not related to the pileup.