A hazardous substances leak that closed Port Chester's Costco last night was freon, according to emergency authorities.
Firefighters and police were called to the Costco at 1 Westchester Ave. at 7 p.m. for a reported leak on the store's second floor. Dozens of shoppers were ushered out as the building was evacuated, and authorities used Speedy Dry, an industrial-grade absorbent, to soak up the spill.
Observers from the Westchester County Health Department and the state Department of Environmental Conservation were called in. A spokeswoman for the health department said county officials serve in a supervisory role in such spills.
Managers at Costco referred calls to the company's corporate office.
The store re-opened today, after officials gave the green light and determined there were no health hazards.
Freon, or chlorofluorocarbon, is a substance that was used most often in air conditioners and refrigerators. It has been heavily regulated and banned from use in most appliances since the early 1990s, after a push by environmental groups and studies showing the chemical has severe impacts on the ozone layer.
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