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Hazmat crews, DEQ respond to chemical fire at Danville manufacturing plant

One man treated and released

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DANVILLE, Va. – A man had to strip his clothes to be decontaminated after a chemical fire at Cahill Manufacturing Co. in Danville. 

Firefighters responded to the plant around 2:20 p.m. Thursday. By the time they arrived, the fire was out but it was still producing smoke.

People inside the building had thrown dirt on the fire to try to control it. They told firefighters they had been mixing two chemicals and there was a reaction. The container boiled over and started to melt.

The chemicals were being mixed in a 5-gallon bucket for the purpose of disposing of them.

The building had to be evacuated, but according to the battalion chief, there was no threat to anyone else in the area. 

A hazardous materials team responded and eventually decided the area was safe. 

The owner of another business on Cahill Court had helped with the fire. In the process, he breathed in smoke and had also fallen. He was complaining of a headache and a little difficulty breathing. He had to take off his clothes and rinse off before he was able to go to Sovah Health. He was treated and later released. 

The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality will investigate to see if there are any environmental issues. 

Cahill Manufacturing Co. will be closed until the investigation is complete.