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Dye Pack Explodes Accidentally at Bank

A dye pack accidentally exploded in the vault of a Santa Monica Bank branch in Encino on Monday morning, injuring a teller and temporarily shutting down the bank.

The accident happened at 15910 Ventura Blvd. at 8:50 a.m.--before the bank was open--as a teller was carrying a cash drawer through the vault to his window, said bank spokeswoman Marika Cronin-Rose.

A dye pack at the bottom of the drawer spontaneously exploded, emitting eye-irritating fumes that filled the vault.

Dye packs are used to stain money stolen in bank robberies and some of the devices discharge mildly toxic fumes when activated.

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The teller, whose name was not released, was taken by ambulance to Encino-Tarzana Regional Medical Center, where he was treated for minor eye injuries and released, according to a Los Angeles Fire Department statement.

The bank, which delayed its usual opening time, resumed business shortly after the incident and the teller returned to work, the bank spokeswoman said.


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