A chemical explosion in New York could affect thousands
A chemical spill in New Jersey could lead to dozens of injuries and dozens of deaths, state health officials say.
A chemical explosion near New York City’s Penn Station on Monday afternoon was detected by a federal monitor but was not immediately traced, according to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The explosion at the Penn Station complex in New Brunswick, N.J., caused a fire, which caused a chemical spill, and a fire in the station, which forced emergency responders to evacuate the building, according the state Department of Emergency Services.
A total of 14 people were treated and released from hospitals for exposure to the chemical, which is a mixture of nitrogen dioxide and chloroform.
No injuries have been reported.
A source with direct knowledge of the situation said the explosion was caused by an electrical fire in a nearby building, but no one has reported being hurt or killed.
The source, who asked not to be named, said officials were still investigating the cause of the blast and the extent of the fire.
The chemicals were transported to a chemical storage facility and were stored in the building where the blast occurred, according a state Department for Environmental Conservation statement.
A second source familiar with the situation told ABC News that there was no immediate danger to the public or residents of the area.
The state Department, however, said that people who live in the area should be advised to stay indoors and not go outside or use their phones.
The facility has been shut down.
The New York Police Department is investigating.
No one else was injured in the blast, which took place shortly after 6 p.m. in the parking lot of the Northbrook Center, a shopping mall located at the intersection of New Jersey Avenue and Madison Street in Northbrook, according an NYPD spokesman.
The cause of a chemical explosion at a shopping center is unknown at this time, police said in a news release.
Authorities have not yet released a cause for the explosion.
The Northbrook center is owned by Sears Holdings Corp., which also owns the New Brunswick store.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.