Buffalo Grove crash leads to hazmat spill

Updated 8/5/2011 10:27 PM

Hazardous materials teams were called to a Buffalo Grove driveway after an elderly woman crashed her car into her garage, causing a lawn chemical to spill and create fumes, authorities said.

The driver plowed the car through her closed garage door after 1 p.m. Friday on the 600 block of Bernard Drive. As the car went through the garage, it made contact with a chemical and fertilizers commonly used for lawns, according to Sgt. Scott Eisenmenger of the Buffalo Grove Police Department.


Fumes from spilled hydrochloric acid overcame some of the police officers as they attempted to get the woman out of the vehicle. Three officers and the woman were treated at the scene for respiratory issues, and another officer was transported to the hospital for observation, Eisenmenger said.

Hazardous materials teams from Buffalo Grove and two other area fire departments were able to neutralize the acid, which was bubbling in the middle of the garage. Authorities were concerned that the acid could have mixed with torn bags of fertilizer, but the two substances never made contact, said Battalion Chief Shawn Collins of the Buffalo Grove Fire Department.

Hazmat crews had finished their cleanup by 4 p.m.

Police were still investigating how the crash occurred. It's not known if the driver had intended to pull into the garage or if she was leaving.

Her car ended up resting at the back wall of the garage. No structural damage was detected, either to the garage or her attached house, officials said.