Oct 11, 2016
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Three Pinole police officers are recovering after inhaling fumes produced by an apparent combination of household cleaners that emanated from an El Sobrante man’s pickup truck Monday night, police said.

The incident unfolded about 8:40 p.m. when the 46-year-old El Sobrante man called 911 from the Vista shopping center parking lot in the 1500 block of Fitzgerald Drive.

He was was acting erratically and making “weird statements that there were bugs on his skin,” police spokesman Sgt. Matt Avery said.

While three officers attempted to speak with the man, they were exposed to noxious chemical vapors coming from his parked pickup.

A hazardous materials response team including local county and fire officials determined the fumes came from household cleaners. They closed off the parking lot while clearing the chemicals, but surrounding businesses remained opened.

The man was decontaminated at the scene and taken to a hospital for medical treatment and a mental health evaluation, while the officers were treated at a hospital and released.

All four are expected to make a full recovery, Avery said.

Officers don’t believe the man had any intent to use the chemicals to harm others.

Bay City News contributed to this story


About the Author

Mike Aldax is the editor of the Richmond Standard. He has 13 years of journalism experience, most recently as a reporter for the San Francisco Examiner. He previously held roles as reporter and editor at Bay City News, Napa Valley Register, Garden Island Newspaper in Kaua’i, and the Queens Courier in New York City.