Discovery of chemical prompts evacuation at Springfield

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) -- Things are returning to normal around the Springfield-Greene County Health Department after the discovery of a volatile chemical prompted an evacuation.

Department employees were evacuated and streets around the municipal government complex were blocked off until 9:30 a.m. Wednesday while hazardous materials crews disposed of the chemical. Officials said the picric acid was found in the basement of the health department building.

A city spokeswoman said the chemical could have been there for as long as 20 years.

The police department, 911 center, old city hall, and the Busch building were put on lockdown until the all-clear was given. Perimeter streets have reopened.

Information from KTTS, Springfield:

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