HAZMAT in USA on November 09 2017 05:42 AM (UTC).
Rural Health Services Consortium's Rogersville Medical Clinic, on Hwy. 66 South, was evacuated Wednesday afternoon, Nov. 8, after an unknown substance caused several medical staff members there to become sick. About 3:30 p.m., Rogersville Police Department began receiving calls indicating that medical personnel in the examination suite who were attending to a patient - reportedly reeking of a chemical odor - had become ill. Law enforcement officers from RPD and the Hawkins Co. Sheriff's Department, and first responders from Rogersville Fire Department, multiple ambulances from Hawkins Co. EMS, Emergency Management Agency Director Gary Murrell, members of the Hawkins Co. Haz-Mat Team, and others responded immediately to the scene. Rogersville Chief of Police Doug Nelson told the Review at the scene that - at that point - as many as four medical staff members may have been affected by the odor, and that preliminary tests using hand-held air monitors indicated that the entire facility had been contaminated by the odor. It was reported later that as many as nine persons may have been affected. "At this time, we really don't know what we're dealing with, but there is definitely something in the air in there," Nelson said. At least one of those medical staff members was seen by a Review reporter being removed from the building on a stretcher and placed into an HCEMS ambulance for transport to an area hospital. Nelson said that persons who were inside the facility who felt nauseous or were experiencing any other unusual physical symptoms were being referred to Wellmont's Hawkins Co. Memorial Hospital for examination. He also said that a hazardous material team would have to be called in to test the air inside the building and that it would have to be determined when it could be re-opened for staff and patients. As of early Wednesday evening, local first responders were still on the scene, and fire and rescue units from Kingsport Fire Department were reportedly also enroute to the location.