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Doctor Hurt, 17 Made Ill by Fumes From Acid Spill

A doctor suffered apparent minor burns and 17 other people became ill after inhaling fumes when a vial of a poisonous acid was dropped in a Whittier medical building Thursday, officials said.

Phenol acid was dropped on the floor of an office on the second floor of the three-story Summit Health Building, said Whittier Police Officer Chuck Drylie. The doctor, who suffered burns on her hands, was taken to Whittier Hospital Medical Center and “was expected to be all right,” he said. A nursing supervisor at the hospital reported that the doctor was in stable condition and was expected to be released soon.

Seventeen people reported that they were made ill by the fumes, and six of them indicated that they would seek medical aid, said county Fire Inspector Joel Harrison. County firefighters evacuated the building for several hours after the 1:15 p.m. incident. The chemical burned some carpeting, Drylie said.


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