Friday, May 15, 2009

And the award for smelliest office fridge goes to...

The AT&T building in San Jose, California, where seven employees were sent to the hospital after one worker took it upon herself to clean out an office refrigerator on Tuesday. The odors were so noxious that another 325 people were evacuated from the building.

From the CNN article:
"It was like a brick wall hit you," employee Robin Leetieh told CNN affiliate KGO-TV. "Stopped you immediately."

The refrigerator had been unplugged for some time and moved into a conference room for cleaning. When the woman tried to scrub down the mess, the stench from the cleaning chemicals combined with the rotting food.

"It caused some to vomit, some to just get nauseous. And it, for us, activated a hazardous incident," Capt. Barry Stallard of the San Jose fire department told the television station.

Another office worker tried to cover up the odor -- and made matters worse.

"Someone also took some spray and tried to deodorize the air," Stallard said. "And it turned out that was spot cleaner, not a deodorant. So it made people very sick."

Firefighters set up a triage area in the building's parking lot. In all, 28 workers reported feeling sick. Seven were taken to hospitals for evaluation.

Not among them: the woman who volunteered to clean the fridge.

She suffers from allergies, firefighters said, and had had nasal surgery.

She didn't smell a thing.

No fake moldy sandwich bags needed here. Happy Friday!

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