Firefighters respond to tank slowly leaking sulfuric acid at Fermilab – Update: leak contained, clean-up begins

UPDATE: July 9, 2018, 6:05 p.m.

Acid leak contained, clean-up begins

Fire department hazardous-material personnel successfully contained a pinhole-sized leak of sulfuric acid from a 400-gallon tank used for water treatment in a building on the Fermilab site and stopped the leak. A hazardous-material contractor is now on site to remove the acid remaining in the tank and clean up the area where the leak occurred.

There was no environmental impact.


POSTED July 9, 4:02 p.m.

What happened?
A 400-gallon tank with sulfuric acid for water treatment at Fermilab sprang a leak Monday afternoon, July 9, 2018, around 2:30 p.m., and is slowly leaking acid.

Who was involved?
Employee responsible for the system noticed the leak and informed Fermilab Fire Department. No people injured.

Tank located in Fermilab Central Utility Building.

What is the response?
Fermilab has requested support from local fire departments to contain leak and monitor situation. Fermilab fire department and local fire departments are at site of incident.

Sulfuric acid is a common chemical used in many processes. It is corrosive.

How will we provide further updates?
Fermilab will provide more updates when available. Reporters should check the Fermilab website at or call 630-840-3351.