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Pumpkin Spice Air Freshener Prompts Evacuation of Md. School

In this February 8, 2017, file photo, pumpkins are pictured at a stand in a trade fair in Berlin, Germany. Pumpkin spice-themed products are hitting shelves as early as August this year. Emmanuele Contini/NurPhoto via Getty Images

An unusual smell prompted an evacuation and a hazardous materials response at a Baltimore high school. But after five people were taken to the hospital complaining of upset stomachs, fire officials discovered the source of the smell: a pumpkin spice air freshener.

Cristo Rey Jesuit High School was evacuated Thursday afternoon after students and teachers detected a strong smell on the third floor. Several people reported difficulty breathing.

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(Published Friday, June 22, 2018)

The fire department and a hazardous materials team were called. Fire spokesman Roman Clark said two students and three adults were taken to the hospital for stomach ailments.

Then, firefighters located a pumpkin spice air aerosol plugged into an outlet in a classroom.

Clark said: "It's better safe than sorry."

Classes at the school resumed Friday.

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(Published Friday, June 22, 2018)