14 employees fall ill after fumigation at tech offices

Fourteen employees of the Massachusetts Information Technology Center became ill while working this morning and many more self-evacuated from the Chelsea offices, after fumigation in their building overnight, officials said.

“What happened is they were doing some fumigation over the night and when employees came in this morning they started to feel nauseous and dizzy,” said Chelsea Deputy Fire Chief John Quatieri.

When firefighters arrived at 10 a.m., a number of employees were leaving the building, which houses between 1,200 and 1,500 employees, Quatieri said. Fourteen employees were treated at the scene, and another four were taken to an area hospital with injuries that were not considered serious.

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“Most people just needed to get out in the fresh air,” Quatieri said.

Quatieri said all the proper fumigation procedures were followed at the state-owned building at 200 Arlington St. The building was left unoccupied for four hours after the fumigation, and a cleaning crew was called afterwards to sanitize the gassed building.

“We are not sure what caused the dizziness,” Quatieri said. “It may have been the cleaner itself, which was ammonia-based.”