Unknown chemicals kill a woman, trigger hazmat situation at Fairmont Hotel in San Jose

One woman is dead following a hazardous materials situation at the Fairmont Hotel in downtown San Jose, the San Jose Fire Department confirmed to SFGATE on Saturday.

The hazmat incident unfolded about 10 a.m., with one person killed and nine people transported to a local hospital. The nine injured were not considered to be in life-threatening condition.

Firefighters were initially called to the 19th floor of the hotel on a report of a suicide attempt, apparently using chemicals, said Capt. Mitch Matlow with the San Jose Fire Department.

Once there, crews found one person dead; nine people exposed to the chemicals were decontaminated and taken to the hospital. Another group of people was also evaluated, but not taken to the hospital.

The scene was declared “under control” by the San Jose Fire Department as of 4 p.m.

The fire department was still unsure of what chemicals were involved, stating that all that was known was “chemicals were involved in the death of a single person,” Matlow told reporters at a press conference.

When contacted, Officer Gina Tepoorten said that San Jose police were investigating the incident as a suicide.

Guests of the 18th, 19th and 20th floors of the hotel were evacuated, totaling 120 guests in 79 rooms, according to KTVU. There were initial reports of a chemical odor, later described by the fire department as a “rotten egg smell.”

San Jose firefighters, police and medical responders were on scene at the hotel, the fire department said in a tweet at 11:44 a.m.

Northbound Market Street outside the hotel is shut down to traffic and is expected to remain closed for hours. The remainder of the hotel was not evacuated, KTVU reported.

Bay City News contributed to this report.

This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Hazmat-situation-Fairmont-Hotel-downtown-San-Jose-14404622.php.

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