Hazmat crews stop Nitrogen leak at aerospace company

Posted at 8:34 PM, Oct 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-25 21:12:33-04

CASCADE, Mich. — Fire crews donned hazmat gear to stop a gas leak at GE Aviation Systems.

The leak started before 7 p.m. Friday night. Witnesses told FOX 17 of a heavy white gas billowing from a building near 33rd Street and Patterson Avenue.

Chief Adam Magers of the Cascade Township Fire Department said a crack in a pipe leading to a recently-filled tank of Nitrogen gas caused the leak. Nitrogen gas freezes when exposed to air, which locked up a valve for the 11,000-lb tank, exasperating the issue.

Hazmat were needed to enter the thick cloud of gas, thaw the valve, and shut off the flow through the pipe.

Nitrogen can be dangerous, causing asphyxiation at high-levels, but Chief Magers says there were no injuries and the area is safe to re-enter.