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About 300 Treated After Chemical Spill

April 18, 1988

SAUGET, Ill. (AP) _ About 200 East St. Louis residents and seven firefighters were treated for eye, throat and respiratory problems after a chemical spill Sunday at a Monsanto Co. plant, authorities said.

A tank car being loaded with phosphorous trichloride overflowed, spilling about 250 gallons of chemical, Monsanto officials said. The phosphorous trichloride became a hydrochloric acid cloud when it hit the air and drifted over the southern part of East St. Louis.

Hundreds of families were evacuated for several hours from an area of five square blocks, said Fire Chief Bruce Hill.

All of the residents reporting problems were treated and released at St. Mary’s Hospital, hospital officials said.

Seven firefighters were treated and released at the hospital, Battalion Chief Raymond Mix said.

Glynn Young, a Monsanto spokesman, said there were no injuries at the plant.

Phosphorous trichloride is a liquid used to produce agricultural and water- treatment chemicals.

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