Spokane Mall evacuated after fumes sicken people

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Thousands of people were evacuated from Northtown Mall, in Spokane, WA following complaints that unknown fumes were causing throat irritation and blocked throats at around 3:30 p.m. Pacific Time on Sunday. Eight people were moved to hospital by ambulance while others reached hospital on their own. None are believed to be in a life-threatening condition.

Firefighters on scene used specialized equipment to attempt to identify air contaminants, but initial tests were "unconclusive". Hazardous materials crews continued to investigate the nature of the fumes during the later afternoon after closure of the mall.

Firefighters have deemed the mall safe, and mall security allowed certain staff to perform the mall closing operations. The mall is expected to open as usual on Monday.