Two police officers hospitalized after exposure to substance - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Two police officers hospitalized after exposure to substance

By Jamel Major - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Two Memphis police officers were hospitalized Friday morning after possibly inhaling an unknown substance while responding to a hazardous materials call.

"For precautionary reasons, we did transport them to area hospitals," said Lt. Wayne Cook of the Memphis Fire Department.

It all began when someone called 911 after spotting the chemicals under a small bridge.  When police, firefighters, and hazmat crews arrived, they discovered four 50 gallon drums.

Cook said one of the containers contained wastewater, while the second had paint in it.  The third contained gluconic acid, which is used to clean metal.  The fourth drum contained an unknown substance.

"It doesn't present a hazard or immediate hazard to the community," Cook said.

Authorities are investigating to see who the containers may have belonged to.

"We have no idea the source of these products; where the containers came from at this point," Cook said.

Since the liquids were not a threat, authorities said they did not have to shut down traffic or evacuate anyone.

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