FBI Investigates Odor at Walmart
The Walmart in Germantown. | Photo: TODAY'S TMJ4
GERMANTOWN - FBI and ATF agents are now investigating the source of fumes released in the Walmart along Appleton Avenue in Germantown Thursday afternoon.
Forty seven people were treated in area hospitals. Police say ambulances took 25 of those people, 22 others went on their own. All are expected to be fine.
People were overcome by the fumes near the automotive section just after noon. Authorities quickly evacuated the store. Buses were brought to the scene to keep people who had evacuated the store warm. Ambulances and authorities were called from many neighboring communities.
Germantown Police Chief Peter Hoell told reporters, "We received a report of people inside our Walmart that were overcome by some unknown substance that was in the air. It wasn't seen but it was felt physically, internally."
Hazmat crews and ATF are on the scene trying to figure out what was released into the air. They don't want to ventilate the building, because they don't want to release the substance into the air.
Police have found a substance on the floor. Hoell says they have an idea what it is, but prefer not to release that information.
It is not clear when the Walmart will reopen.