Cleaning & Maintenance Management Online

Fumes from cleaning chemicals cause hospitalizations, evacuation

March 1, 2010
BROCKTON, MA — A janitor attempting to unclog a toilet improperly mixed chemicals, causing toxic fumes and the evacuation of the Plymouth County Superior Court, according to the Enterprise News.
According to the story, the janitor mixed bleach and a product containing sulfuric acid, resulting in a powerful ammonia odor that caused building occupants to suffer from watery eyes, nausea and gagging.
Three court officers were hospitalized from the noxious odors, and hazardous materials and emergency crews worked quickly to evacuate the building, which was housing eighteen prisoners at the time, the story stated.

Officials say the courthouse will reopen this week and court proceedings — including jury deliberations in a murder case — will continue, the story added.

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