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New Haven crews clean after haz-mat incident near school

NEW HAVEN -- Someone who was being evicted from a building on Winchester Avenue in New Haven poured a mixture of chemicals down a sink drain and an HVA system, which caused an odor in the neighborhood.

The smell prompted a response from emergency responders, who quickly placed the nearby school, Highville Charter School, in a shelter-in-place. Shortly thereafter, students were released. There is no threat to the public.

Rick Fontana, director of the Office of Emergency Management, said a mph wind made the odor travel quickly. Officials do not yet know what the chemicals were but said they were mixed with bleach.


Crews are focused on cleanup and have told nearby businesses and residents that they are safe.

A chemical leak at a New Haven school forced students to shelter in place for a time on Wednesday.

Officials said  the incident began on the 4th floor of the Highville Charter School in the organic lab when the disposal of hazardous material fumes were emitted outside.

Officials said someone was being evicted and poured chemicals down the drain. There is no danger to the public.

Students sheltered in place and were then sent home.

"There is no danger to the public as the New Haven Fire Department has isolated this area. This is a full hazmat response with CT DEEP also on scene," said officials.

The school is located at 375 Winchester.

Google Map for coordinates 41.308274 by -72.927884.

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