‘No danger to anyone’ despite long Ciba siren blast

Published 12:00 am Saturday, November 9, 2002

Neighbors living near Ciba Specialty Chemicals were alarmed late Thursday night when the company’s &uot;site alert system&uot; sounded loud and long across the area.

Win Winslow, community relations manager for the chemical company’s Suffolk plant on Wilroy Road, said the system alert was prompted by an air leak in one of the system’s pipes inside the &uot;Works 2&uot; building.

The alarm system in the structure began emitting its piercing signal at 10:15 p.m. Drivers passing by the plant at the same time the signal was blaring saw what they believed to be smoke emanating from one of the buildings. They notified 911 Emergency Communications in Suffolk and fire fighters arrived at Ciba within minutes.

Email newsletter signup

Upon their investigation of the scene, fire fighters found that the alert system began sounding as the result of a drop in air pressure within the sprinkler system’s pipes.

&uot;We identified where the system was leaking air and we will be working Friday to replace the piping in that area,&uot; said Winslow. &uot;The alert signal sounds whenever there is a problem of any kind, and it’s loud enough so that people working in high noise areas can hear it. People driving along the highway and those living in nearby neighborhoods can also hear it.&uot;

Winslow said the &uot;smoke&uot; that was observed was actually steam being vented from the plant’s boiler house.

&uot;We appreciate the concern of the people,&uot; said Winslow. &uot;But, there was absolutely no danger to anyone at anytime during this alert.&uot;

Winslow also said that if at anytime anyone is concerned, or if they have questions about Ciba Specialty Products, they are invited to call Ciba’s Community Information Line at 538-5000.