On Saturday, Aug. 18, the Springfield First Aid Squad responded to a hazardous materials incident in Elizabeth where nine people, including emergency responders, were sent to the hospital.
EMTs and firefighters responded to a report of someone having seizures. The emergency responders encountered a strange odor in the patient's apartment building and became ill along with several residents of the apartment building. According to media reports, an EMT a fire captain and a pair of children were brought to the hospital following reports of illness, including numbness and vomiting at the scene.
The Springfield First Aid Squad responded to the incident. At the scene, the squad triaged four patients, assisted them to a decontamination area, and then transported them to Trinitas Hospital in Elizabeth.
According to an ABC news report, the apartment building was being fumigated for bed bugs. Emergency responders reportedly dispersed the pesticides fans but did not evacuate the building.
"When needed, the squad goes to our neighboring towns to render assistance through mutual aid,” Springfield First Aid Squad First Lieutenant Joe Voorhees said in an email. “Whether it be a medical, trauma, or mass casualty incident, we assist in any way needed."
The squad is often called upon to respond to neighboring towns if an ambulance isn't available, or they have multiple calls in their town at once. In addition, the squad responds across the county to larger incidents such as fires and haz-mat incidents like this incident.