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Chemical leak on MU campus prompts hazmat; no injuries reported

UPDATE: The Columbia Fire Department is investigating a small chemical leak on MU’s campus Thursday night.

Battalion Chief Stephen Potter said they closed Hitt Street as a precaution to clean the reported leak at the Sears Plant Growth Facility, a greenhouse that’s part of the Bond Life Sciences Center. Potter said two researchers at the building contacted MUPD when they noticed a chemical leak, first reported as methylimidazole, a “corrosive” substance. The department still needed to investigate further into the building to confirm that was the chemical, Potter told ABC 17 News around 10 p.m.

MU spokesman Christian Basi said a faculty member and student called police when seeing the leak from a small canister. MUPD, CFD and the school’s Environmental Health and Safety department worked on the situation, including CFD’s hazmat unit. Potter said neither person was injured, and were quarantined as a precaution while they investigated.

The MU Alert system released this statement on its website.

“MU Officials have received reports of a small, leaking container inside one room of the Sears Plant Growth Facility on campus. The room has been evacuated, there are no injuries reported and there is no danger to the public. The Columbia Fire Department is assisting the university at this time.”

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