Stormont Vail Emergency department back open after hazardous spill

(KSNT Photo/Vanessa Alonso)

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – A hospital in Topeka is looking into a hazardous material spill late Monday night.

Stormont Vail Health Hospital says at 10:30 p.m. Monday, an incident occurred in the emergency department waiting room where a hazardous substance was spilled.

Stormont Vail says staff responded quickly and according to the Stormont Vail Health Hazardous Spill Response Procedure.

A Report!t sent to the KSNT News newsroom Monday night says the hazardous material was liquid mercury.

Stormont Vail tells KSNT News they have not done a chemical analysis on the substance to confirm that it was liquid mercury but handled the substance that looked and acted like mercury as if it was.

Stormont Vail Health Spokesperson Tracy O’Rourke says they hope things like this never happen.

“We understand that there is always a possibility so we train our staff accordingly. Last night they followed protocol and we were able to contain the situation quickly with minimal affect to those in the Emergency Department.”

The Emergency Department was temporarily shut down and patients were diverted to other local and regional emergency departments. The Stormont Vail Health Emergency Department reopened Tuesday morning. Other areas of the hospital were not affected.

O’Rourke commended his staff for handling the situation with expertise, care and clear heads.

Stormont Vail says at the time of the incident, approximately 20 patients were in the Emergency department and were all treated and discharged or admitted for their original condition.  No patients were transported off site but new incoming patients were diverted to other local and regional emergency departments.

During situations like this, it is imperative that we have good working relationships with other local hospitals, and we thank them for their support,” said O’Rourke.

Stormont Vail says all staff working in the Emergency department were isolated and evaluated for exposure. None were admitted to the hospital.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment, the State Fire Marshal, and local Topeka Fire and Police departments were called in according to protocol. Hazmat Response, Inc., based in Kansas City was engaged to do final cleaning.

Patients who are experiencing minor injury or illness can visit one of the Cotton O’Neil Express Cares:

Express Care Croco
2909 S.E. Walnut Dr.

Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Weekends, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Express Care North
4505 N.W. Fielding Rd.

Monday – Friday 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Weekends, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Express Care NOTO
1130 N. Kansas Ave.

Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Closed Weekends

Express Care Urish  

6725 S.W. 29th Street

Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Weekends, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

 

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