Police investigating oxygen tank explosion in downtown Toronto
CP24
 

Police are investigating an oxygen tank rupture at College Street and Elizabeth Street.

Officials say they received a call about a possible chemical spill just before 2:30 p.m.

White smoke could be seen coming from a large 13,000 gallon oxygen tank.

A powder substance spilled from the tank onto the ground in the surrounding area.

Toronto fire officials tell CP24 they believe the substance is non-toxic perlite that is used to insulate oxygen tanks.

“There’s an insolation material called perlite that released," said District Fire Chief Bill Bygrave. "It’s not toxic but it is an irritant. So it released up into the air, it’s like a powder. And we had to wet it down.”

Officials say perlite poses no risk to the public. But if perlite gets crushed it could irritate people’s lungs and cause respiratory issues.

No injuries have been reported.

Police have blocked off areas around College Street and University Avenue near Toronto General Hospital.

Nearby residents are asked to stay inside their homes and people are told to stay away from the area.

The city will be responsible for cleaning up the substance once the investigation is complete.

<back to Headlines