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Green Slime in Viral New York City Video Was Sprinkler System Test

new york manhole

Getty A different New York manhole.

A video showing green slime bubbling up from a manhole cover in New York City has sparked questions.

Dan Pantelo first shared the green slime video on X on November 2, 2023, where it has had more than millions of views. “Can anybody explain this or are we just living in full blown Gotham rn,” he wrote.

The video showed the slime oozing from a manhole cover and into the street and sidewalk.

Daily Mail reported that it had unraveled the mystery. A staff member at O’Hara’s Restaurant and Pub, where the green liquid was spotted, told that “city workers were testing the hotel’s sprinkler system across the street using a green foam, which left behind the eerie residue.”

Daily Mail continued: “A mixture of water and foam concentrate is pumped into the system to clean out any residue that could hinder the water flow.”

Here’s what you need to know:

One of Dan Pantelo’s Posts, Which Described ‘Literal Green Sludge,’ Has Had More Than 25 Million Views

In a second post, Pantelo wrote, “So there’s literal green sludge bubbling up from the ground next to World Trade Center right now.” That post had 25 million views.

A community note attached to the post cites Wikipedia and wrote, “This is water full of green dye. Plumbers frequently use harmless, fluorescent green dye to detect leaks in plumbing and sewage systems.”

Pantelo, the founder of a company called Marpipe, joked in a follow-up post, “how do i acquire superpowers from this.”

He also wrote, “So uh… a truly random tweet got 25 million views, made the front of New York Post, and got reposted by a ton of meme pages. Very cool very random. Contrary to the community note, I think the sludge is radioactive ooze. Source? Divine intuition.”

Green Slime Has Been Spotted in Manhattan Before

The New York Post tried to get official comment on the slime’s source. “The Post reached out to the Department of Sanitation for comment, where a spokesperson deferred to the city’s Department of Environmental Protection, which deferred to Con Edison,” the site reported.

In 2017, the Gothamist reported on a similar situation, writing, “What Is This Green Goo Oozing Through Midtown?” That time it was referred to as a “mysterious toxic sludge.”

In March 2023, The Post reported, “green slime oozed into the entrance of the Seventh Avenue subway station in Prospect Heights in Brooklyn.”

Michigan reported a previous issue with green slime, according to WISN-TV, in 2019.

In the Michigan incident, the Michigan State Police eventually revealed, “It was later advised a commercial building located on E 10 Mile Road, had been leaking the chemical Hexavelent Chromium. The chemical ran from the basement of the building, down into the ground and found its way thru a drain which empties onto east bound I-696.”

The police in Michigan added, “The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) indicated that once the chemical came up thru the drain, it froze into a yellow blob. The plan to dispose of the chemical is to bring in a type of excavator, scoop up the frozen waste, and place it into a safe container.”

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