Workers Sickened by Chemical Odor

Investigators determined that the odor stemmed from an adhesive remover

By Willian Avila and Jacob Rascon
|  Wednesday, Apr 30, 2014  |  Updated 3:56 AM PDT
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Workers Sickened by Chemical Odor

Five people were hospitalized after coming in contact with a chemical at an office building in Pomona on Tuesday, fire officials said.

The chemical was apparently released at the five-story Verizon building in the 200 block of South Locust Street, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department. People were complaining of minor eye irritation, rashes and coughing, officials said.

Workers at the building told NBC4 that the odor caused some people to vomit.

After evacuating 300 people from the building, investigators determined that the odor stemmed from an adhesive remover in a construction area on the building's third floor.

Some employees told NBC4 that the smell had been there for weeks and suddenly became stronger Tuesday.

"Verizon is committed to providing a safe and environmentally sound workplace for our employees," Verizon spokesman Harry J. Mitchell said in a statement. "We will thoroughly clean the building tonight, and we also will increase fresh air ventilation, replace air filters and closely monitor the building in coming days to ensure conditions are safe. In addition, we will work with the construction contractors to make sure that they are taking appropriate measures."

The people who were hospitalzed were expected to be OK, fire officials said.

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