Workers discover suspected arsenic, four hospitalized

FORT COLLINS COLORADOAN - Four workers with Exodus Moving and Storage discovered vials labeled as arsenic and mercury as they unpacked a 13-year-old, previously unopened storage trailer Thursday afternoon.

One of the workers opened the vial labeled arsenic, which contained a white, powdery substance. At least one of the workers was exposed to the substance, but at first none of the four showed symptoms of being sick. However, one worker began to feel unwell, so all four underwent decontamination before being transported to Poudre Valley Hospital as a precautionary measure, said PFA battalion Chief Ron Simms.

They were unpacking the trailer at Centennial Livestock Auctions, 113 NW Frontage Rd., to prepare the items within the trailer for auction. The woman who owned the trailer ceased making payments two years ago, and Exodus management's contacts went unanswered, said Carrie Levy, Exodus director of business development. When that happens, the company auctions off the items and donates the proceeds to local non-profit organizations. The woman had originally stored the trailer in 2003 and had not returned to open the trailer since.

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