Chemical mixture error sends some to hospital

Published: Jan. 27, 2012 at 4:32 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 27, 2012 at 11:59 PM CST
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - Several people were sent to the hospital after a chemical mixture error in Cape Girardeau.

It happened around 11:15 a.m. at HealthPoint Fitness. The building was evacuated after a mixing error involving laundry chemicals, according to Southeast Health.

According to the fire department, the mixture caused a chemical reaction as one of the chemicals was a mild acid and the other was an oxidizer

According to Cape Girardeau Fire Chief Rick Ennis, crews were dispatched to some sort of chemical mixture sending fumes in the air.

Three employees were taken to the hospital for precautionary reasons, according to Southeast Health. They were being treated for minor chemical irritation and were released later Friday.

Fire department crews say large electric fans were placed in the building to bring fresh air into the structure. While the fans were running personnel continued to monitor the area for toxic levels.

Crews say hospital personnel then shut off the HVAC system while the incident was ongoing to keep the fumes from traveling throughout the building.  Fire personnel then started monitoring the area for toxicity in the environment.

The fire department used Haz-Mat suits and removed a 15-gallon container of mixed chemicals from the building, according to the fire department.

HealthPoint reopened at 2 p.m.

Rehab appointments have been rescheduled.

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