Crews spend hours cleaning up liquid mercury after hazmat situation in South Whitehall


A hazmat team has been called in South Whitehall Township after crews brought what appeared to be a pipe bomb to the area of Wehr's Dam to disable it, State Police Trooper Nathan Branosky said.

The item turned out to be a pipe containing liquid mercury. A remediation crew and a fire marshal remained on scene to clean it up.

State Police and a bomb squad had been on scene, but they have since left, a 69 News crew at the scene said.

South Whitehall Township Police Chief Glen Dorney said there is no risk or harm to the public, and there was very minimal environmental exposure.

The situation was expected to be mitigated in the next few hours, Dorney said.

Hazmat crews were called to Lime Kiln Road and Rachael Lane, Lehigh County dispatchers said. State Troopers and South Whitehall Police are there as well.

The incident started after a crash on Route 22 westbound at Cedar Crest. While investigating the crash, what appeared to be a pipe bomb was located, Chief Dorney said.

State police said in a news release the crash had been a three-vehicle hit-and-run crash with injuries.

A driver from a vehicle in the crash was taken by ambulance to Lehigh County Hospital Cedar Crest for injuries sustained in the crash, state police said.

Route 22 westbound had been temporarily closed while State Police Hazardous Device and Explosive Section took possession of the device.

The device was determined not to be a pipe bomb after it was transported to the field in South Whitehall Township, state police said in the release.

The item was a pipe which contained liquid mercury. Crews were still on scene cleaning it up.

State Police is now handling the incident.