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Amazon warehouse workers sick after bear repellent explodes



amazon bear repellant screenshot
About 80 Amazon workers
were treated after an incident at a warehouse in New Jersey on
Wednesday morning.

NJ Advance Media

  • Around 80 workers are being treated by emergency
    services after a can of bear repellent exploded at an Amazon
    warehouse in Robbinsville Township, New Jersey, on Wednesday
  • At press time, 20 people had been sent to a local
  • The immediate area is being ventilated, but the entire
    warehouse did not need to be evacuated.

Around 80 workers are being treated by emergency medical services
after an incident at an Amazon warehouse in Robbinsville
Township, New Jersey, a local official has confirmed.

A can of aerosol bear repellent exploded after falling off a
shelf in the warehouse at about 8:50 Wednesday morning, according
to John Nalbone, the communications and public information
officer for Robbinsville Township.

About 80 people who reported having difficulty breathing and
experiencing a burning sensation in the eyes and throat were
treated by EMS on the scene. Roughly 20 of those people have been
transferred or are in the process of being transferred to a local
hospital. Bear repellent is mostly made of capsaicin, the spicy
chemical found in hot peppers. 

A Twitter account for the union representing the Robbinsville
Fire Department said that seven ambulances and a medic responded
to the incident.

Officials determined that the entire warehouse did not need to be
evacuated, and the affected area is being ventilated.

“Today at our Robbinsville fulfillment center, a damaged aerosol
can dispensed strong fumes in a contained area of the facility,”
Amazon spokesperson Rachael Lighty told Business Insider in a
statement. “The safety of our employees is our top priority, and
as such, all employees in that area have been relocated to safe
place and employees experiencing symptoms are being treated
onsite. As a precaution, some employees have been transported to
local hospitals for evaluation and treatment. We appreciate the
swift response of our local responders.”

Read more:
people have died on the job in Amazon’s warehouses since 2013 —
here’s what happened

The company has come under fire for its workplace practices
before. A report released earlier this year by the National
Council for Occupational Safety and Health, a private nonprofit
worker advocacy group, named Amazon as one of its “dirty dozen”
companies. Amazon landed on the list for “a disturbing pattern of
preventable deaths,” the report said, noting that
seven Amazon workers have died
 on or near the job since

“We are proud of safety record and thousands of Amazonians work
hard every day innovating ways to make it even better,” an Amazon
spokesperson said in a statement at the time of the report’s

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