Guntersville Post Office Working to Deliver Mail Following Methanol Spill

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GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) – The Guntersville Post Office has reopened following a chemical spill earlier Tuesday that caused three employees to have breathing difficulties. 

Postal Service officials say the chemical was methanol, a non-hazardous substance.

Police Chief Jim Peterson said the methanol did not leak out of a package, but was already present on approximately 12 packages when the arrived.

Peterson said the post office plans to make every effort to deliver Tuesday’s mail this afternoon and evening.

Three postal employees were taken to a nearby hospital shortly after 9 a.m. One is the postmaster.  Chief Peterson said the employees reported having trouble breathing and said they almost passed out from the substance.

According to Debbie Fetterly, the USPS spokesperson for the Alabama district, the oily substance was tested and determined to be methanol, a non-hazardous substance.

The Guntersville Fire Department set up a decontamination area in case more postal employees needed to be washed off.  No employees needed this, Chief Peterson said, but some firefighters and law enforcement personnel went through the decontamination process as a precaution.

The post office was closed around 9 a.m. Tuesday.

The Albertville Fire Department sent a truck to Guntersville to help respond to any calls that came in while Guntersville firefighters responded to this call.


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