Odor came from South Philly refinery site, Fire Department says
The first reports were made early in the afternoon and were traced to clean-up work at the former Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery site, which shut down in the wake of an explosion in June.
Officials reported Thursday evening that an odor that prompted complaints around the city came from the former Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery site in South Philadelphia and that the situation was under control.
“PES was cleaning and disassembling pipe, and an odor was released,” the city said in an email.
The Fire Department and city air management service, along with the state environmental officials, responded to the site to investigate.
“The Fire Department’s Hazmat Task Force conducted air monitoring and did not detect hydrogen fluoride or other potentially volatile substances,” the city said. Authorities said the release had stopped.
The refinery shut down in the wake of an explosion in June in which toxic hydrofluoric acid was released.
The Fire Department first reported the incident on Twitter shortly after 2:30 p.m.
Philadelphia Gas Works received some reports of an odor from South Philadelphia and areas to the north, a spokesperson said. The reports described it as smelling like sulfur or propane or sewage. Tests were conducted, and it was determined that the odor was not from PGW, the spokesperson said.
CBS3 reported that two schools also had reports of a suspicious odor.