An ammonia leak at the ethanol plant east of Boyceville sent an unidentified man to the hospital on Thursday afternoon.
Around 3:30 p.m., Big River Resources in the Town of Hay River was evacuated as emergency personnel responded to what was originally reported as an explosion at the plant. According to Menomonie Fire Department Battalion Chief Denny Klass, however, what actually happened is that a pressure relief valve on an ammonia tank opened up -- as it was supposed to in the case of too much pressure.
As a result, however, one of the workers in the area seemed to have inhaled some of the ammonia vapors and was transported by Boyceville Community Ambulance Service to the hospital to be checked. Boyceville and Menomonie EMS crews also had to be decontaminated following the incident.
The building where the leak took place is leased by Air Products of Monroe, La. which produces liquid CO2. The scene was cleared two hours later.