Salvation Army Volunteers Overcome with Nausea

DFR HAZMAT team responds to call at collection center

By Frank Heinz
|  Wednesday, Dec 12, 2012  |  Updated 12:13 PM CDT
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According to the Salvation Army, a volunteer picked up a glass container which broke and 5 people in the warehouse were overcome by fumes.

Keaton Fox, NBC 5 News

According to the Salvation Army, a volunteer picked up a glass container which broke and 5 people in the warehouse were overcome by fumes.

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Several volunteers are being treated after being overcome with nausea at the Dallas Salvation Army collection center in Dallas Wednesday morning.

At about 9:30 a.m., Dallas Fire-Rescue responding to a HAZMAT situation at the collection center on the 5500-block of Harry Hines Boulevard after several people reported becoming nauseous.

According to the Salvation Army, a volunteer picked up a box containing donations when a glass container that was among donated items fell through the box and broke on the ground, spilling what was described as a molasses-like material.

While volunteers were cleaning up the mess, they noticed the smell.

"As we attempted to clean up that spill, and get it out of the warehouse, this odor just began to almost mulitply itself throughout the warehouse and so we evacuated all of those folks," said Carl Earp, with the Salvation Army.

Five people in the warehouse started feeling ill and were transported to an area hospital as a precaution.

The rest of the building was evacuated while officials investigated the material. 

By 11 a.m., officials determined that the smell was a mix of methanol and barium sulfate as well as an unknown substance that officials determined was not harmful.

At last check, HAZMAT crews were searching through the remaining donated items to see if any other hazardous material remained and if the donated items need to be discarded.

NBC 5's Keaton Fox contributed to this report.

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