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Foul Odor Forces Evacuations At Grapevine Hospital

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GRAPEVINE (CBSDFW.COM) - Fire crews were called to Baylor Regional Medical Center in Grapevine twice Thursday, after several staff members reported feeling sick.

Around 8:30 a.m. Thursday, two staff members reported feeling symptoms of nausea, dizziness and even vomiting.

Those staff members were evaluated by staff members in the emergency department.

“We also called the fire department just to make sure that the environment was safe for our patients,” said Steve Newton, President of Baylor, West Region.

Grapevine Fire Department responded to the scene and used specialized equipment to begin monitoring the air but found nothing out of the ordinary, gave the all clear and left.

Less than two hours later, more staff members reported feeling sick, with the same symptoms.

Those who became ill, all worked in a close area on the hospitals third floor.

“Out of an abundance of caution, we transferred 34 patients in that patient care area to other parts of the hospital,” Newton said.

Grapevine Fire Department was called back to the scene to re-check the affected area.

Once again, fire crews monitored the air.

“We do monitor for carbon monoxide, oxygen content, flammable substances, hydrogen cyanide,” said Mark Ashmead, a Deputy Chief at the Grapevine Fire Department. “These are things that are typically found in a more industrial setting than a hospital.”

The third floor remained closed to patients and after several hours of air monitoring, what caused the illness among staff members remains a mystery.

“We’re very pleases that all our patients are doing just fine and the fire department has indicated they cannot find anything that might have caused our staff members to feel dizzy,” Newton said.

Hospital officials believe this is an isolated incident.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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