Major chemical spill closes road

EMERGENCY services were forced to close the Fitzroy Developmental Rd for more than nine hours yesterday as they worked to clean 40 tonnes of ammonium nitrate off the road.

A B-double carrying the dangerous load rolled about 5.50am yesterday spilling the chemical across the roadway 42km north of Dingo.

Ammonium nitrate is an oxidising agent used in the production of explosives and though it is not explosive on its own, it can have a violent reaction when mixed with some incompatible substances such as combustible or flammable liquids.

The driver of the truck was not hurt in the crash and the prime-mover remained on its wheels, though its two trailers rolled. Police set up a 1km exclusion zone and shut off the road, not opening it again until 3.30pm when all of the debris was cleared.

Police could not confirm what company the product belonged to or where it was headed. But explosives manufacturing company, Orica, confirmed their employees and products were not involved in the incident.

The crash comes just days after the SES and Orica held a training exercise to ensure all were prepared in case just such an emergency occurred.

Last week's simulated emergency was designed to ensure all were ready and able to handle an on-road incident involving Orica products being transported through Queensland.

It involved Orica employees and representatives from the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service and Queensland Police Service.