Photos: Firefighters Respond To Spill At KEMH

July 12, 2012

[Updated] At just before 11pm this evening [July 12] the Bermuda Fire & Rescue Service arrived at King Edward Memorial Hospital, with four fire trucks, two support fire vehicles and what appeared to be over a dozen firefighters.

The situation is not fire related, with unofficial reports indicating the firefighters were called in due to some form of a spill, with at least four firefighters seen wearing hazmat suits.

Click bottom thumbnails to view photos:

What appeared to be members of the hospital management arrived close to midnight, and at that point hospital security came over saying that management had requested the media leave the property.

From our subsequent positioning off the property, we noted two firefighters don hazmat suits at around 1.15am, with two more firefighters joining them in protective gear twenty minutes later.

The hazmat-suit wearing personnel disappeared down in the bottom/back area of KEMH, and were seen rinsing off with water after coming out, with a temporary outside ‘shower’ having been put in place in advance.

A few staff members leaving the hospital, speaking unofficially and off-record, indicated to Bernews that to their knowledge the patients and staff are all fine. We will update with additional information as able.

Update 2.30am: A Works & Engineering truck and van showed up appearing to be carrying some form of containers, and the firefighters are now out of the hazmat suits and are packing them away.

Update 2.50am: Approximately four firefighters put on breathing apparatus and went into the back/bottom area of KEMH carrying brooms.

Update 5.12am: All fire personnel left the area at around 5am.

Update 6.30am: A Fire Service spokesperson confirmed they had responded to a spill of a “caustic substance” at the rear of the hospital, and had eight vehicles and 15 firefighters on scene.

Audio of a BFRS Lieutenant explaining the situation:

The substance flowed some 100 feet in area, and sand was used to mitigate the spill. The clean-up was a joint effort between firefighters, W&E and KEMH. There were no injuries, and the incident has been declared under control.

A BHB spokesperson confirmed they experienced a spill of sodium hydroxide overnight, and that services inside the hospital were not impacted and no injuries were reported.

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Category: Accidents/Fires, All, News, Photos

Comments (11)

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  1. Logic76 says:

    We’re spending how much for a new hospital when we can’t run the old one properly?!

    • Get Real says:

      On behalf of the Queen and all of the people of Bermuda, we are sorry for not living up to your perfect standards and actually having an accident. Shame on the hospital right? You could have at least waited until the OSHA report was done…….gee.

      • Logic76 says:

        Then please, on this “fiscally responsible” island, explain to me the need for a new hospital at a cost of “x” million dollars when this country is in debt up to its neck. There have been reports of a 12 year old dying from influenza due to a lack of medication in the KEMH pharmacy. There have also been reports of unnecessary death directly caused by staff at the hospital that cause a stir among the public for 3 days then, once again, fall on deaf ears. The problem isn’t with the physical structure, it lies with the people who fill it!

    • Whats really goin on says:

      I would really like to live in your word where everything is perfect! LOL
      Accidents do and WILL happen. Well done to all involved in the containment and clean up! (applause)

    • john doe says:

      what is your problem, the hospital has had how many accidents? just have to find somehthing negative in every story dont you.

      • Logic76 says:

        No if you’ve read my comments previously you’ll see I do not find the negative in every story. Due to personal experiences I have lost all hope in the staff of the BHB, as have many Bermudians, and do not see any sense in throwing millions of OUR dollars on an unnecessary project!

        • Jackie says:

          The redevelopment of the hospital is not an unnecessary project! If nothing was done to rebuild it and let it stay as is, then your a$$ would be complaining about that too…

          • Logic76 says:

            Would I really Jackie? With the cost of treatment being considerably lower overseas and the quality of treatment being considerably higher overseas would my “a$$” be complaining? My insurance covered me for my treatment overseas although according to the BHB I could have been treated in Bermuda. I was then informed by my general practitioner that if I had contracted COOP disease while in Bermuda instead of South Carolina like I did 2 years ago I would now be dead. You can take that with a grain of salt.

            • Jackie says:

              Well I suggest you go on google and find out how you can prevent COOP disease and then your insurance company wouldn’t have to waste money unnecessarily. As you know, taking care of yourself and preventing diseases, will help keep our health insurance premiums down. Good bye and enjoy the rest of your day :)

  2. The Truth (Most Imitated) says:

    What they haven’t told you is that it is gonna be a new wing to the hospital the old one will still be operational after the new building is finished.

  3. younggeelady says:

    i am glad that the community got together to help out the hospital after that spill. and you guys are saying that the new hospital is not needed yet if there was to be a really bad flu going around and we all had to go to the hospital there would be no room. i think its about time the hospital gets a new facility. they are also getting new equipment which is also needed. so instead of talking bad about the government and the new hospital be thankful because you never know when you will need to visit the hospital to get an xray or go see a family member’s new baby.