Fire crews test suspicious puddle at Columbia hotel
COLUMBIA - Fire crews responded to a possible hazardous materials situation at a Columbia hotel Thursday morning. Initial tests showed it to be water, but more tests were being done.
Columbia Fire Department Battalion Chief Stephen Potter said he believed the suspicious liquid was water, but that crews were testing it to be certain there was not any chemical compounds in it.
An employee of the Holiday Inn called the fire department after the employee saw a film over a puddle in the parking lot that seemed strange. Crews from both the Columbia Fire Department and Boone County Fire Protection arrived at 9:17 a.m.
The Holiday Inn Express did not evacuate the hotel while crews tested the puddle. Potter said the fire department took a sample from the puddle and, using chemical paper, determined the water was neutral. He said he did not believe there was any danger to wildlife or individuals at the hotel.
Potter said if there was a chemical in the water it had been diluted already because of heavy rainfall over the week.
Crews continued to dig up the grassy area near the filmy puddle late Thursday morning as a safety precaution.