The Speedway bottling plant was shut down from approximately 10pm on Saturday (31 January) and production resumed at around 7pm on Sunday evening.
Speedway Fire Department attended the scene alongside crews from the Wayne Township Fire Department and Indianapolis Fire Department.
“The night shift employees at the Coca-Cola bottling plant in Speedway noticed a strong odor of ‘ammonia’ coming from the front half of the plant at 10.05pm,” said Everett M. Cheney, Speedway Fire Department, in a statement. “The decision was made immediately to evacuate and call 911.”
Upon the arrival of fire crews the incident was upgraded to a Hazmat incident.
“The Hazmat team made entry and determined the concentration of ammonia gas was well over acceptable tolerances, which would be 25ppm or less: their readings discovered the ammonia present at 700ppm,” said Cheney.
“There were no civilian or firefighter injuries or illnesses during this event and at no time was the surrounding public in any danger as exterior ammonia levels were well below tolerance limits.”
A spokesperson from The Coca-Cola Company told BeverageDaily.com a ‘leak in a pipe fitting’ was responsible for the incident.
“All employees were safely evacuated and no one required medical attention,” he said. “Production resumed on Sunday night”
Ammonia is typically used in the refrigeration process in bottling operations.