Chemical leak from overturned semi closes I-70 east in west Columbus for hours

(Courtesy: ODOT)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) -- Cleanup for an overturned semi on a west Columbus highway is expected to keep part of I-70 east closed into the late evening.

According to the Columbus Division of Fire, a semi rolled over onto the driver side to the outside of the cloverleaf connecting I-70 east and I-270 north around 3:00 p.m.

The semi was carrying a tank with 4,200 gallons of the chemical Vinylpyridine, which is used in the production of tires. Officials said there's no recognizable damage to the tank, but Hazmat crews determined there's a small leak at the top of the tank. Investigators say the leak itself is small problem, but could be made that much worse if they removed the hatch to see if it could be sealed.

Officials say a professional hazmat cleanup crew is in route from Cincinnati. Members of the cleanup crew will work with members of the Ohio EPA and Columbus Division of Fire to determine if the tanker can't be up-righted while full, or if it needs to be offloaded before rolling back on its wheels, officials said.

Authorities have determined that with the small size of the leak and the wind heading east, no further closures of the freeway are needed at this time. Columbus Police has members prepared to shut down other parts of the freeway if necessary.

ABC 6/FOX 28 will have more details on this developing story when they're available.

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