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Authorities detonate explosive substance found at Wisconsin landfill

A discovery of an explosive substance in a car at the La Crosse County landfill, let to the landfill being closed and evacuated for a period of time on June 29, while authorities could safely detonate it.

According to a report in the Lacrosse Tribune, a technician at the technician at the Household Hazardous Materials facility discovered a container of picric acid in a box of materials being dropped off at the site about 3:15 p.m. The technician immediately cleared the building and called the fire department.

The substance was clearly labeled which was helpful. According to officials, if the picric acid, a substance used to etch metal and make jewelry or dye fabric, was dropped of exposed to air, it could have detonated.

The La Crosse Hazmat team responded to the call and ordered staff to cordon off a 150-foot radius around the vehicle. Explosive specialists from the Dane County Sheriff’s Department were called and used a charge and four gallons of gasoline to detonate the quarter pound of material about 8 p.m. in an open space at the landfill.

The HHM program accepts hazardous wastes such as oil and gasoline, paint, aerosol, florescent bulbs and rechargeable batteries but not explosives, compressed gas cylinders and radioactive materials.

The incident is a reminder for people to use caution with unknown substances, Randy Nedrelo, special waste manager for the La Crosse County Solid Waste department, told the Lacrosse Tribune.

Source: Waste Today

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