BUSINESS

Hazmat crews try to identify unstable substance following fire at California waste facility

11/19/2014 09:58 EST | Updated 01/19/2015 05:59 EST
SANTA PAULA, Calif. - Hazardous materials crews are trying to determine how to deal with an unstable substance remaining after an explosion and fire at a Southern California waste treatment facility.

Ventura County fire Capt. Mike Lindbery says only a handful of smouldering hot spots remain Wednesday at the site in an agricultural area near Santa Paula, northwest of Los Angeles.

A vacuum truck exploded early Tuesday at Santa Clara Waste Water Co., spreading a chemical mixture that contained sulfuric acid and a highly combustible organic peroxide.

Lindbery says the material is highly toxic and combustible.

No burn injuries were reported, but 37 people were washed down or treated for complaints such as breathing problems, red eyes and skin rashes.