Firefighters had to be called in when containers of acid were found dumped in a Hebburn street.
Council workers had gone to Wardley Lane to clear up fly-tipping when they found chemical containers.
Firefighters from Hebburn station were called at 9pm yesterday to help remove them.
A spokesman said: "There were a couple of chemical containers there when the council came to remove the fly-tipping, and they leaked on the back of the truck. It was some sort of acid.
"They were contained quickly and disposed of securely."