Workers at Arnold AFB discovered a powdered bromine leak during a facility walk down of the Turbine Engine Cooling Towers on Friday at approximately 5 p.m.
Some of the powdered bromine compound mixed with the humid air and gasified, creating a gaseous plume. A cordon was established and nearby buildings evacuated. No employees reported bromine exposure symptoms.
The hopper holding the compound later ruptured, releasing more of the chemical.
As a precaution, emergency personnel have closed Wattendorf Memorial Highway and are redirecting traffic around the area.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, “breathing bromine gas could cause you to cough, have trouble breathing, get a headache, have irritation of your mucous membranes (inside your mouth, nose, etc.), be dizzy, or have watery eyes.”
The extent of the plume is being closely monitored and necessary precautions are being taken.