- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 30, 2019

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois officials are urging motorists to be cautious around agricultural equipment after a release of anhydrous ammonia last week in suburban Chicago.

The Illinois Department of Agriculture on Monday issued an anhydrous ammonia safety video produced with the Illinois Fertilizer and Chemical Association. It outlines proper safety procedures that farmers should take when handling these products. 

Agriculture Director John Sullivan says drivers of other vehicles must be extra cautious in maneuvering around slow-moving farm vehicles.

Anhydrous ammonia can cause burns or other health problems when it’s inhaled or comes in contact with skin.

Authorities say 37 people were sickened Thursday in Beach Park, Illinois. A tractor driver was towing tanks of anhydrous ammonia from Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, to an Illinois farm when the chemical leaked, creating a toxic gas cloud.

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