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Chemical Spill at Cottage Prompts Evacuation

Pathology Lab, Pueblo Street Briefly Cordoned Off


Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital’s pathology lab had to be evacuated at around 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, September 10, due to a chemical spill. Hospital staff explained to a hazardous materials crew that the spilled substance was a mixture of formaldehyde and water that is used as a disinfectant and preservative but is also flammable, corrosive, and irritating to the eyes and respiratory system. According to a press release on the incident from Gary Pitney, Santa Barbara City Fire Department spokesperson, between 15 and 20 employees waited outside while emergency crews cleaned up the three gallons of spilled fluid. This process resulted in a stretch of Pueblo Street near the hospital being temporarily cordoned off.

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