Multiple agencies are investigated a suspicious package incident at the post office at Tampa International.
Tampa Fire Rescue responded to the postal facility located on the grounds of Tampa International Airport, 3501 Bessie Coleman Blvd, at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday.
Workers at the sorting facility experienced symptoms related to exposure to a chemical irritant while handling packages that were recently delivered to the facility.
Paramedics treated a total of nine patients, five were transported to St. Joseph’s hospital and four were treated at the scene and released without transport.
The facility was evacuated while the Tampa Fire Rescue Hazardous Materials Incident Team entered the facility to locate the source of the material. Initial readings of the air inside the facility were negative.
HAZMAT technicians and postal personnel were able to locate a package containing a chemical called tert-Butyl hydroperoxide. The chemical is used in the manufacture of various commercial and industrial products. The leaking container was boxed up for shipping. The container itself was clearly marked with a label indicating its contents.
The container was removed from the facility and no longer poses a hazard. The patients who were transported complained of minor symptoms related to exposure to the irritant and are expected to recover. The postal facility opened back up early this afternoon.
No flight operations were affected by this incident.