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Hewlett-Packard Investigates What Sickened Workers
CORVALLIS, Ore. (AP) - Hewlett-Packard officials are looking into what twice caused the evacuation of a building over the weekend. Three workers reported nose and throat irritation early Sunday while working in a clean room where silicon wafers for inkjet printer cartridges are manufactured, said H-P spokeswoman Heather Glover. One worker also reported feeling short of breath, she said.
The workers were taken by ambulance to Good Samaritan Hospital, where they were evaluated and released, Glover said.
The building's west production area was evacuated and remained closed until about 1 p.m., Glover said.
Two hours later, three other employees working in the clean room reported similar symptoms, Glover said. The area was evacuated and remained closed Monday evening. Glover said it was not known when it would reopen.
She declined to say how many workers were evacuated.
``Air sampling showed any suspected causes of irritation were below detectable levels,'' Glover said.
In August, employees were twice evacuated from the same area after complaining of headaches, dizziness and mild burning in the nose and throat.
Fewer than 10 employees were affected, an H-P spokeswoman said at the time. The problem was traced to a leak in a waste line that allowed a water and acid solution to drip into the clean room's air-handling system, creating noxious fumes.
Copyright ) 2000 The Register-Guard
-- (Dee360Degree@aol.com), April 18, 2000