THE smoko van driver was over the moon to have a full workplace before 8am yesterday as a sulphuric acid leak shut down work at McAleese transport.

Queensland Fire and Emergency Services were called in about 7.30am and evacuated the Toolooa business because a 98% sulphuric acid liquid leaked out of a 1000L container on a truck and onto the ground. 

Firies quickly evacuated the business and created an exclusion zone. 

The ambulance left the scene once it was declared safe, along with police officers.

Workers took advantage of the early morning break though, and bought breakfast from a smoko van. 

One worker grabbed a camping chair from the back of his car, sat outside and waved at passing traffic along Gladstone-Benaraby Rd.

Firies covered the acid with a tarp to protect it from reacting with water and creating a poisonous gas. 

Once the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services scientific inspector arrived two men put on level three splash suits. The suits protect them from acid. 

With the big yellow suits, the two men neutralised the acid using soda ash.

Gladstone acting station officer Dale Iwanicki said dealing with dangerous leaks was one of the many jobs they do.

"Only 20-50L leaked out of the container," he said. 

"We're not certain where the leak was but it appears there was a crack in the plastic container."

The firies had to remove the sulphuric acid from the container into a new one. 

They relocated the containers to the Gladstone Station to complete that job. 

"Due to possible inclement weather we won't decanter the rest until tomorrow," he said. 

"We have to wait for the recovery crew to come and we have a crew on standby for when they do that."

McAleese did not respond to our questions before the story went to print last night.


EARLIER 11am: 

QUEENSLAND Fire and Emergency Service are still on the scene of the sulphuric acid leak.

Firies have neutralised the leak and are waiting for a recovery team to clean the area. 

EARLIER 8.45am:

A sulphuric leak has been identified at McAleese Transport on Gladstone Benaraby Rd.

Nobody has been injured and paramedics have already left the scene.

McAkeese Transport, where a sulphric leak was detected this morning.
McAkeese Transport, where a sulphric leak was detected this morning. Campbell Gellie

Fire crews are still investigating.

More to come.

GALLERY: Our M'boro heritage on display

premium_icon GALLERY: Our M'boro heritage on display

The seventh annual Maryborough Open House event went off like magic

The neighbours from heaven

premium_icon The neighbours from heaven

Meet the Hervey Bay locals looking out for their neighbours

GALLERY: Bricks good for the mind

premium_icon GALLERY: Bricks good for the mind

An injured war veteran turns to Lego to keep his 'mind sharp.'

Local Partners