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Hazmat teams evacuate pets from Gilbert vet clinic

(Twitter Photo/@GilbertFireDept)

PHOENIX — First responders in hazmat gear rushed to a veterinary clinic in a Phoenix suburb early Thursday morning.

Gilbert firefighters evacuated 15 animals from the BluePearl Veterinary Partners facility near Gilbert and Guadalupe roads, by the canal. The site was shut down for several hours, reopening around 10:30 a.m.

Deputy Fire and Rescue Chief Josh Ehrman said crews ruled out a possible natural gas leak, but he said their equipment noted something hazardous in the air inside the building.

Ehrman said the investigation centered on a possible leak of ethylene oxide, which Krueger and an OSHA fact sheet said it was used to sterilize medical equipment.

The OSHA fact sheet said acute exposure can cause respiratory irritation, lung injury and other health problems.

Authorities closed down the street at Juniper Avenue.

Hazmat crews from Mesa and Chandler and a team from Arizona National Guard also went to the clinic to help.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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