Keep a lid on your Pepper Spray

This story struck me as odd:

Emergency teams rushed to a Seattle hotel and at least five people were treated when a chemical irritant was released into the air Sunday morning.

Dozens of police, hazmat teams and medics were dispatched to the scene, the Hotel Andra at Fourth Avenue and Virginia Street, at about 11:15 a.m.

The chemical irritant turned to be a pepper spray, according to a statement from the hotel.

"The can of spray belonged to one of our guests, and was accidentally tipped over by a member of our housekeeping staff while servicing the room," the statement said.


Presumably, the guest drove to the hotel  Or obviously, our highly efficient and effective TSA would have secured the Pepper Spray before they got on a plane.  Right?  Of maybe they just had less than 3.4 ounces of it.

But "tipped over"?  Was it in a cup?  Did someone fill their travel mug with pepper spray instead of coffee?  Is pepper spray really the kind of thing that can, if "tipped over," sicken 5 people and result in a full hazmat rollout?

In High School, Brother Paul Bernard opened the school year in Chemistry class by releasing a copper-based brown gas into the class room from an experiment.  That stuff poured out of the box on his desk and drifted towards the floor like a fluffy liquid.  Of course he reminded us, "THIS! is poison GAS!" but continued to do it for some reason.  I think he'd be considered a felon now.

So close the lid on your pepper spray.  You don't want housekeeping to spill it. I guess.


Keim said...

I can match this. Last June I ran a 1100 person conference for the Univ. of Idaho. Evolutionary Biologists came from all over the world. Many stayed in the dorms. I had one come up to me and say "I want a new room." I said "Why?" "I found an m80 in my room." So I called janitorial to remove the m80. They didn't want to do it, so they called the cops. The cops sent in the bomb squad! When I found out the cops had been called I had to put into place the campus disaster plan, notifying relevant officials. The conversation with my boss started like this "I don't want you to worry, but the police have been called."

All this over a large firecracker. If I'd known I'd have retrieved it myself and blown it off for fun.

Vera said...

Maybe they didn't really spill it, they accidentally sprayed it, not knowing what it was. Make sure to keep your pepper spray labeled properly.