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Estimated 50 gallons of hydrochloric acid leaks from 18-wheeler in Riviera

The Stripes store was evacuated and Corpus Christi HAZMAT team was contacted to assist with cleanup efforts.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — An 18-wheeler which dropped about 50 gallons of hydrochloric acid in Riviera on Thursday night was on its way to Benavides to deliver the chemical for use in the oil fields.  

"The company is going to receive probably a bill from various sources," said Kleberg County Sheriff Richard Kirkpatrick. "Again, you know the store has a disruption. Now, again, the company is probably going to be liable for a sizable amount of money that was involved in cleanup efforts, and that sort of thing."

Two local businesses were affected by the spill, including a Stripes store, which was evacuated and closed for almost six hours and a nearby hotel, whose patrons were not evacuated, but told to shelter in place.

Kirkpatrick confirmed with 3NEWS that the 18-wheeler was traveling north of the Robstown area carrying a 250-gallon tank filled with hydrochloric acid. He said other drivers on the road had been calling emergency services about the truck's leak since it had made its way through Robstown.

A driver was then able to flag down the 18-wheeler to make them aware of the leak in the tank.

Kleberg County Fire & Rescue, Texas DPS and other law agencies helped with cleanup.

Kirkpatrick said that Highway 77 was not closed off as a result of the leak.

Hydrochloric acid is colorless, but can be detected by its bitter smell. It's corrosive, can cause burns to the skin and be fatal if breathed if inhaled in high concentrations.  

🚨Happening now, Kleberg fire is on scene with a HAZMAT incident at the stripes in Riviera. Please avoid the area until it is cleared 🚨

Posted by Kleberg County Fire & Rescue on Thursday, June 22, 2023

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