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Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Accident Report Detail

Accident: 202074126 - Nine Employees Become Ill After Chemical Exposure

Accident: 202074126 -- Report ID: 0453730 -- Event Date: 11/22/1996
InspectionOpen DateSICEstablishment Name
30151973211/26/19969431Toe River Health District
On November 22, 1996, Employees #1 through #9 were overcome by a chemical vapor. Initially, Employee #1 experienced coughing, loss of breath, and gagging. Several minutes later, Employees #2 through #9 became symptomatic, with headaches, coughing, and a gagging feeling. All 35 workers in the building were sent to the Yancey Community Medical Center and, of the those experiencing symptoms, one was sent to Memorial Mission Hospital in Asheville. All were treated and released the same day. The Hazardous Materials Team from the Asheville Fire Department responded to the site. No definite cause of the odor was determined, but sewer gas was suspected. An open sewer pipe was located in front of the building's air intake units.
Keywords: respiratory, vapor, headache, inhalation, gas, chemical vapor, overexposure, sewage, chemical, cough
Employee # Inspection Age Sex Degree Nature Occupation
1 301519732 Non Hospitalized injury Poisoning(Systemic) Nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants
2 301519732 Non Hospitalized injury Poisoning(Systemic) Nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants
3 301519732 Non Hospitalized injury Poisoning(Systemic) Nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants
4 301519732 Non Hospitalized injury Poisoning(Systemic) Nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants
5 301519732 Non Hospitalized injury Poisoning(Systemic) Registered nurses
6 301519732 Non Hospitalized injury Poisoning(Systemic) Nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants
7 301519732 Non Hospitalized injury Poisoning(Systemic) Secretaries
8 301519732 Non Hospitalized injury Poisoning(Systemic) Nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants
9 301519732 Non Hospitalized injury Poisoning(Systemic) Nursing aides, orderlies, and attendants

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