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Posted at 10:36 AM ET, 02/11/2011

Building odor sickens two in College Park

By Matt Zapotosky

UPDATE, 11:25 a.m.

Firefighters have determined the odor that sicked two people in a building near College Park Friday morning originated from an industrial strength cleaning product a restaurant was using to clean its cooking equipment, authorities said.

The odor prompted the evacuation of the roughly 300 workers at 6511 America Boulevard, a four-story office building with shops and restaurants on the ground level, authorities said. Two workers complained of being sick, but they quickly felt better after they left the building, authorities said. No one was hospitalized.

Firefighters were first notified of the incident at about 10 a.m., authorities said. By 10:45 a.m., the building was ventilated and all the workers were allowed back inside.

Previous post.

Two people were sickened by an odor in a College Park building Friday morning, and firefighters are on scene investigating the source, authorities said.

The incident occurred in the 6500 block of American Boulevard. Mark Brady, a Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department spokesman, said firefighters were initially called for a report of an odor and one sick person. They arrived to find a second person sick on scene.

As of 10:20 a.m., paramedics remained on the scene treating the victims, Brady said. He said firefighters could not immediately locate the source of the odor, but they were checking a restaurant in the area where construction work was being done.

Stay with for more detail.

By Matt Zapotosky  | February 11, 2011; 10:36 AM ET
Categories:  Maryland  
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America Blvd is in Hyattsville not College Park. It is adjacent to Prince George's Plaza.

Posted by: MDsportsGuy | February 11, 2011 11:03 AM | Report abuse

Industrial cleaning chemicals, perhaps?

You've probably smelled the foul chemicals they use in most office buildings. In many buildings there's absolutely no way to ventilate the vapors even; everything's sealed up so hermetically and they don't tend to give janitors access to ventilation controls.

Building managment companies and cleaning contractors and OSHA all fail to protect these custodians and other cleaning people. Those people get sick as dogs breathing in these chemical vapors and they're in a poor position to bargain / improve things.

I mean, who notices enough to care when the cleaning woman -- who has to work in order to make her rent payment despite running a temperature of 103 -- has to breathe foul vapors for the next four hours of cleaning?

Posted by: FedUpInMoCo | February 11, 2011 12:21 PM | Report abuse

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