Residents at historic hotel evacuated after chemical release

San Francisco Bay (Getty Images/File)
San Francisco Bay (Getty Images/File)
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Updated: 3/18 11:52 pm

BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) — Residents and guests at a legendary San Francisco Bay area hotel and social club had to evacuate after a resident used toxic chemical to commit suicide on Tuesday.

According to police spokesman Ethell Wilson, the 80-year-old woman used sodium azide to kill herself in her apartment Tuesday. This took place on the third floor of the landmark Berkeley City Club.

A note was left outside her apartment to caution authorities of the threatening situation, as bomb squad technicians and hazardous materials crews responded before 2 p.m.

While other residents and guests of the building were evacuated, Wilson said there were no reports of injuries.

Based on reports from the Oakland Tribune, law officials closed Durant Avenue between Telegraph and Shattuck Avenues in Berkeley, while investigators worked.

At this time, there is no indication if the toxic substance has contaminated the whole building, said the Oakland Tribune.


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