East London CO2 leak causes quite a scene, but minimal risk say fire officials

A compressed gas leak caused quite a spectacle for anyone traveling along Dundas Street East in London, Ont. Monday.

White vapour clouds could be seen shooting out from a tanker truck that was pulled over to the side of the road on Second Street, just north of Dundas.

An official from the London Fire Department (LFD) told CTV News a driver was doing his normal route when he noticed the leak in his rear-view mirror.

He called emergency services and the LFD Hazmat Unit was dispatched around mid-day.

Once on scene fire crews closed off the immediate area and allowed the leak of carbon dioxide to continue to dissipate into the atmosphere.

District Chief Dennis Schiffers said if it can’t be fixed the leak would continue until the gas is fully exhausted. He said the compressed gas dissipating into a large open area poses minimal risk to the public.

“There are hazards associated with it, freezing, [and] things like that if you’re close by. But as you get farther away it becomes much more diluted, and the hazard goes down exponentially,” Schiffers said.

Schiffers couldn’t say how long it would take for the CO2 to leak out.

⁦.@LdnOntFire⁩ on scene of CO2 leak Second at Dundas #ldnont. Asking public to steer clear of area. pic.twitter.com/doWP7aSudy

— Bryan Bicknell (@BBicknellCTV) May 2, 2022