Pool chemicals should not be stored in your home - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Pool chemicals should not be stored in your home

June 13, 2005

Albany -- Having your own swimming pool to cool off in is great in South Georgia this time of year. But those chemicals you use to keep your pool water clean can be dangerous. When mixed with other common articles around your home, those chemicals can erupt in flames.

 Firefighters mix a common pool shock and brake fluid. Within seconds the mixture erupts in flames. Albany Interim Fire Chief James Carswell said "A lot of people bring things into their homes everyday that if not stored and handled properly can cause problems."

 Pool chemicals containing Calcium Hypochlorite are volatile, and when mixed with common items in your home like motor oils or even a soft drink, create enough heat to give off toxic fumes, or start fires. Carswell said "Just because they store it in their home next to something that it's incompatible with it, then they don't anticipate a problem, but it's there."

 Pool chemicals were believed to have combusted, starting the huge fire that engulfed the Albany Lowe's in minutes.

Strong oxidizers containing calcium hypochlorites should not be stored in your home. Carswell said "Outside somewhere in a storage building away from the main structure. And then make sure they are on a shelf so other chemicals can't be mixed with them."

Mixing those chemicals with anything besides the pool water could be tragic. The fumes emitted by these pool chemicals when oxidizing actually contain hydrochloric acid, and can damage your lungs.

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