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Amazon workers hospitalized after bear repellent releases fumes

Posted: Updated:
ROBBINSVILLE -

Authorities say 24 workers at an Amazon warehouse in Mercer County have been taken to the hospital after a can of bear repellent was punctured and released fumes.

At least one of the workers was in critical condition Wednesday afternoon, according to officials.

About 30 other workers were treated at the Robbinsville facility. Most people were reporting difficulty breathing or burning in their throats.

Robbinsville spokesman John Nalbone said that an automated machine damaged a 9-ounce can of bear repellent. He said the fumes were contained in one area of the building.

Amazon spokeswoman Rachael Lightly said in a statement, “The safety of our employees is our top priority…We appreciate the swift response of our local responders.”

Lightly said that employees were relocated to a safe space away from the fumes following the incident.

Hundreds of workers are normally inside the building during work days. It was unclear how many were exposed.

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.

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