Haz Mat Situation Sends Nine First Responders to Hospital

Updated 2 years ago Edited by Tony Rutherford from Multiple Reports

County Road 107 near Proctorville, Ohio, was blocked for several hours Sunday, July 16, for what was preliminarily described as a hazmat situation. Nine people , including first responders, were rush to area hospitals.

However, upon further investigation, the fumes were not "toxic," but a combination of household chemicals. Apparently, a woman's efforts to clean a toilet resulted in the a pepper gas styled burning feeling. 


Sunday night, Bill Elliott provided the following description of the incident in a FB update:

Lawrence County EMS Medic 41 was called to call in Rome Twp. Once they got on scene the crew started experiencing burning to skin, rash, and burning to throat. Another squad was called in along with the Rome Fire Dept.. Two firemen, four LCEMS personnel, and three patients all had similar symptoms and were transported to Cabell Huntington Hospital where they were met by my favorite female fire chief, Jan Rader, for decontamination and evaluation in the ED.

LCEMS had myself, Cindy Carver, Vonda Fritz, Quinton Harris, Micah Ellison, and James McQuaid on scene helping with decontamination. The Proctorville Fire Dept., and the Lawrence County Sheriff's deputies were on scene also. Lawrence County EMS Director Earl Fry was on scene and left to go to Cabell to check on our employees. 

Medical Director, Dr. Ben Mack, was on scene with the Rome Fire Dept.. The Coal Grove Fire Dept. brought Lawrence County's hazmat trailer to scene to investigate the residence where all the patients were exposed to the unknown substance.

As of 0100 hours this morning there is no confirmation of what caused any of the patients symptoms... There were three people decontaminated on scene and released. Huntington Fire sent some gas meters to help with the investigation also. All fire and ems personnel have been evaluated and released from Cabell Huntington Hospital.

We had two LCEMS squads go out of service due to this incident and in no time we had employees coming in off duty to man two more squads!! Also a big thanks to our 911 center!  Thanks to all involved! Please support our EMS levy in the fall. It's either we have EMS in Lawrence County or we don't! Peace, comfort, and healing to all in need!


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