Pittsburgh firefighters sickened after call to PNC computer room

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Three Pittsburgh firefighters responding to a fire call in a PNC computer room may have become sick after breathing in vapor released in company's fire suppression system.

PNC spokesman Fred Solomon said the vapor, deployed from the ceiling because the alarm was sounded, is not a hazardous material.

The firefighters were being treated this morning at UPMC Mercy Hospital. They reported feeling sick after breathing in something that has not been identified while responding to the call.

Their illnesses aren't believed to be serious, an Allegheny County emergency dispatch supervisor said.

Crews went to PNC's First Side Center at 500 First Ave. shortly before 8:10 a.m. for a general fire alarm call, the dispatch supervisor said.

There are no technical problems at the facility and PNC has not determined whether there was a fire at all, Mr. Solomon said. What triggered the general fire alarm is still under investigation.

Employees were allowed back into the building about 8:25 a.m.

The room where firefighters responded is not usually occupied by employees, Mr. Solomon said, though one person reported a sore throat and is seeking treatment.

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Molly Born: mborn@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1944 and on Twitter: @borntolede.


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