Hazmat situation at West Palm Beach Holiday Inn; 10 people affec - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Hazmat situation at West Palm Beach Holiday Inn; 10 people affected when pepper spray released

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - A Holiday Inn located near the intersection of Belvedere Road and Mercer Avenue was evacuated Thursday morning after a canister of bear spray, which contains pepper spray, discharged in a third-floor room.

West Palm Beach Fire Rescue said 10 people were exposed to the spray and complained of respiratory problems.

One person was taken to Good Samaritan Hospital in stable condition.  Nine others signed waivers saying that they did not wish to be treated.

A fire official said a cleaning staff went inside of a room and were overcome by the spray.  The crew reported the odor and left the room. Other people on the floor also reported smelling it.

"None of the guests were sprayed with it. It was discharged in the room and the immediate area, people in the immediate area who tried to walk down the hallway got a face-full of it, secondary to the initial spray," said Assistant West Palm Beach Fire Chief Diana Matty.

The hotel made contact with the guest who was staying in the room where the bear spray was found and the guest confirmed it was left behind.

About 60 fire department personnel responded to the scene.

Right now guests are being allowed back in the lobby and the ventilation of the third floor and rest of the hotel continues.

Westbound lanes of Belvedere Rd from Mercer Ave to I-95 were still closed as of 12:15 p.m., but were expected to open soon.

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