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.

Remnants of what was once Hurricane Florence are still causing problems along the East Coast. One person was killed and another injured during a tornado in Chesterfield County, VA.

(Published Monday, Sept. 17, 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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