Hazmat Incident at Countryside Mall: 4 Hospitalized After Chemical Mixing at Whole Foods

Clearwater Fire & Rescue Department responded to a hazardous materials incident at Countryside Mall, 27001 U.S. 19 N, following reports of a chemical mishap at Whole Foods. The alarming call came in at 5:02 p.m., citing the mixing of two cleaning chemicals within the store premises.

As a precautionary measure, the entire store was evacuated, and fire crews swiftly arrived on the scene to assess the situation and ensure the safety of patrons and staff. Initial evaluations revealed four individuals requiring immediate medical attention due to potential exposure to the hazardous substances. These patients were promptly transported to local hospitals for treatment, while two others who were assessed on-site opted against further medical assistance.

While emergency responders continue their diligent efforts to manage the situation, the store has been cleared for re-entry by employees. However, it remains uncertain whether Whole Foods will resume operations for customers tonight, pending further assessment and safety protocols.

This incident serves as a sobering reminder of the critical importance of proper handling and storage procedures for chemical substances, as well as the swift and coordinated response of emergency personnel in safeguarding public health and well-being. As the investigation progresses, authorities will work diligently to ascertain the circumstances surrounding the chemical mixing and implement measures to prevent similar incidents in the future.

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In the meantime, residents and patrons are urged to exercise caution and remain vigilant, especially in environments where hazardous materials are present. Clearwater Fire & Rescue Department, in collaboration with local authorities, remains committed to ensuring the safety and security of the community, even in the face of unforeseen challenges such as this hazardous materials incident at Countryside Mall.

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