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Vapor from chemical ignites at Fort Lee optometrist office

Photo Credit: GoogleMaps

ONLY ON CLIFFVIEW PILOT: A flash fire caused by a chemical used to remove the tint from sunglasses left a Fort Lee police officer with minor injuries and brought Bergen County hazardous materials responders to a Lemoine Avenue optometrist’s office.

COURTESY: GoogleMaps

Optometrist Jack Goldberg apparently was heating the neutralizer (also called lens bleach) in a lens-treating unit this afternoon when a vapor ignited, sparking a fire.

“He used a dry-chem extinguisher to put the fire out, and so you had a mixture of chemicals,” said Antony DiCandia, the Bergen County Health Department’s environmental coordinator.

DiCandia told CLIFFVIEW PILOT that a police officer and possibly one other person were apparently overcome by fumes.

The officer’s condition couldn’t be determined.

The initial report was of a chemical fire at 1562 Lemoine Avenue, next to a mini-shopping center.

Bergen County’s Hazardous Materials Unit responded immediately and discovered “it was more like someone had cooked something on a hot plate,” DiCandia told CLIFFVIEW PILOT.

“The chemical itself comes in one-quart bottles,” he said.

“They did some initial readings, then ventilated the area and did more readings after everything was cleaned up. Everything was fine after that,” DiCandia said.

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