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skuthorp
12-28-2015, 03:06 PM
In the midst of central Australian floods a train load of sulphuric acid has derailed.

http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/content/dam/images/g/l/v/l/o/r/image.related.articleLeadwide.620x349.glvet3.png/1451276590669.jpg

"A freight train carrying about 200,000 litres of sulphuric acid has derailed in Queensland's north west.Police shut the Flinders Highway in both directions between Julia Creek and Richmond and enacted an emergent declaration covering a two kilometre exclusion zone around the crash."


Read more: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/queensland-freight-train-carrying-sulphuric-acid-derailed-20151227-glvet3.html#ixzz3veE9ff00
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S.V. Airlie
12-28-2015, 03:08 PM
Sucks but, I could think of things that would be much worse and longer lasting.

seanz
12-28-2015, 03:34 PM
Dump a trainload of lime on it?

lupussonic
12-28-2015, 03:40 PM
In the mid 80's, a cargo ship was wrecked off Anglesea (North Wales), and various items washed up around Blackpool. One such item was an ISO frame with an enormous vessel in it containing sulphuric acid. The authorities deemd it too dangerous to salvage and transport, so they took an axe to it and let it flow into the sea. Never forgotten that.

Steve McMahon
12-28-2015, 03:42 PM
In the mid 80's, a cargo ship was wrecked off Anglesea (North Wales), and various items washed up around Blackpool. One such item was an ISO frame with an enormous vessel in it containing sulphuric acid. The authorities deemd it too dangerous to salvage and transport, so they took an axe to it and let it flow into the sea. Never forgotten that.

The solution to pollution is dilution?

S.V. Airlie
12-28-2015, 03:43 PM
In the mid 80's, a cargo ship was wrecked off Anglesea (North Wales), and various items washed up around Blackpool. One such item was an ISO frame with an enormous vessel in it containing sulphuric acid. The authorities deemd it too dangerous to salvage and transport, so they took an axe to it and let it flow into the sea. Never forgotten that.Well, the sea is one huge toilet bowl and treated like one!

bamamick
12-28-2015, 03:54 PM
Have any of you ever spent much time around sulfuric? All I can say is it's really, really bad. Really bad. Heaven help the poor souls who have to clean that up. It is going to take a very long time. If it happened here the ground would have to be dug up to the point where there is no sulfuric showing up in the samples, and all of that dirt would have to be incinerated.

I have worked with phos acid (no big deal) and nitric (big deal) and just a little bit with lab grade sulfuric reagent. I really don't like fooling with that stuff.

Mickey Lake

S.V. Airlie
12-28-2015, 03:56 PM
Depends on the strength of course but, I have. Any strong acid or base is not good to play with.

hokiefan
12-28-2015, 06:26 PM
Have any of you ever spent much time around sulfuric? All I can say is it's really, really bad. Really bad. Heaven help the poor souls who have to clean that up. It is going to take a very long time. If it happened here the ground would have to be dug up to the point where there is no sulfuric showing up in the samples, and all of that dirt would have to be incinerated.

I have worked with phos acid (no big deal) and nitric (big deal) and just a little bit with lab grade sulfuric reagent. I really don't like fooling with that stuff.

Mickey Lake

While Mickey is right that sulfuric acid is nasty stuff, I see no sign in the pictures that any of the railcars are leaking. If there was a significant leak there would be major fuming. Given the amount (~200,000 liters) there are probably 4 of the 26 railcars that have sulfuric acid in them. If what I see is correct there is no hurry to do anything. Let the flooding recede and deal with it calmly. Sometimes the best emergency response is no emergency response. My $0.02 for what its worth.

Cheers,

Bobby

CWSmith
12-28-2015, 06:36 PM
Well, the sea is one huge toilet bowl and treated like one!

Yes, but the Soviets still get the prize for dumping their reactor cores into the sea.

WszystekPoTrochu
12-28-2015, 07:26 PM
If it happened here the ground would have to be dug up to the point where there is no sulfuric showing up in the samples, and all of that dirt would have to be incinerated.

Not that fire does much to sulphuric acid, at least not of things we'd like to see

Chris Smith porter maine
12-28-2015, 07:37 PM
What on earth does one do with 52,000 gallons of sulphuric acid any way?

Chip-skiff
12-28-2015, 07:50 PM
What on earth does one do with 52,000 gallons of sulphuric acid any way?

For the mining industry, no doubt.

WszystekPoTrochu
12-28-2015, 07:51 PM
What on earth does one do with 52,000 gallons of sulphuric acid anyway?

Frikkin everything. That ain't really that much, too :) Keep in mind it's absolutely necessary in fertilizer production, paper industry, nylon production, some metal processing... lots of stuff that's made in tonnes even at the smallest plant.

seanz
12-28-2015, 08:13 PM
Yes, but the Soviets still get the prize for dumping their reactor cores into the sea.

Intentionally.

Too Little Time
12-28-2015, 08:23 PM
The solution to pollution is dilution?


Well, the sea is one huge toilet bowl and treated like one!

Sulfuric acid is a natural product. I think volcanoes produce it. Dilution is an important process.

hokiefan
12-28-2015, 08:30 PM
What on earth does one do with 52,000 gallons of sulphuric acid any way?

In a different life we used 10,000 gallons a week to produce Crude Tall Oil from Black Liquor Soap Skimmings, a byproduct from the paper industry. Tall Oil is then distilled to make fatty acid and rosin. Fatty acid is used to make dimer, which is used to make adhesive resins. Rosin is used to make resins used in the inks & coatings, and adhesive business. Post It notes have an adhesive made from rosin resin.

Talking with the sulfuric acid suppliers, we used a drop in bucket. Millions of gallons of sulfuric acid are used in the chemical industry to make many different materials that you use every day. Most of that acid travels through the towns of this country in railcars.

Cheers,

Bobby

slug
12-28-2015, 08:40 PM
Hippies will take care of that acid.

Thousands have booked tickets and are flying in as you read this.

Relax.

http://s28.postimg.org/6c0dwxm6l/image.jpg (http://postimage.org/)
image hosting over 10mb (http://postimage.org/)

StevenBauer
12-28-2015, 08:53 PM
About twenty years go I built a couple of buildings for a company that unloaded train cars full of stuff to tanker trucks. Their three main products were plastic beads that were being made into auto trunk liners, flour, and Sulfuric Acid. The acid was going to the paper mills. There was an elaborate system that pumped out the acid with compressed air. They brought in an empty rail car to test out the system and even that was seriously scary. The 1" SS bolts that hold the hatches on need to be replaced every trip as they are already starting to corrode. No fittings on the bottom of the cars, all hatches are on top.

Todd D
12-28-2015, 09:08 PM
What on earth does one do with 52,000 gallons of sulphuric acid any way?

Batteries among many other uses.

WX
12-28-2015, 10:03 PM
Wasn't there a big toxic spill in the NT earlier this year or last year?

The Bigfella
12-29-2015, 01:38 AM
Amount has been updated. Over 800,000 litres, I think

Joe (SoCal)
12-29-2015, 06:14 AM
International commerce of sulfuric acid is controlled under the United Nations Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances, 1988 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Nations_Convention_Against_Illicit_Traffic_ in_Narcotic_Drugs_and_Psychotropic_Substances), which lists sulfuric acid under Table II of the convention as a chemical frequently used in the illicit manufacture of narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances.[31] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sulfuric_acid#cite_note-incb-31)

I say call Walter White he might have something to do with it ;)

WszystekPoTrochu
12-30-2015, 06:11 AM
International commerce of sulfuric acid is controlled under the United Nations Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances, 1988 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Nations_Convention_Against_Illicit_Traffic_ in_Narcotic_Drugs_and_Psychotropic_Substances), which lists sulfuric acid under Table II of the convention as a chemical frequently used in the illicit manufacture of narcotic drugs or psychotropic substances.[31] (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sulfuric_acid#cite_note-incb-31)

I say call Walter White he might have something to do with it ;)

Putting most common substances on such lists ticks me off. Sulphuric acid, acetic anydride, potassium permanganate, acetone, hydrochloric acid, toluene, diethyl ether... Not the slightest problem for drug makers to put their hands on those, and totally unnecessary paperwork and effort put in managing the most basic reagents. Bureaucrats vs reason: 1-0.

Phillip Allen
12-30-2015, 06:23 AM
Dump a trainload of lime on it?

lots and lots of hydrogen gas then?