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Chemical spill of mercaptan in the Compton area

A chemical spill of mercaptan in the Compton area has created a strong gas odor in a wide surrounding area, including Lakewood and Cerritos.

Mercaptan, also known as methanethiol, is a harmless but pungent smelling gas. It is added to natural gas to give it a strong smell that can be easily identified. While the gas is harmless, residents are urged to stay indoors if they can smell the odor.

 L.A. County Fire Hazmat crews are on scene and clean-up is underway.

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