Illinois, Wisconsin hospitals admit at least 37 people exposed to toxic ammonia fumes

Hospitals in Illinois and Wisconsin received at least 37 patients affected by an ammonia spill in Beach Park, Ill., according to the Lake County News-Sun.

As of April 25, seven of the patients were reportedly in critical condition with life-threatening injuries. Eleven firefighters and three police officers were among those transported for medical treatment, Lake County Sheriff's Office spokesperson Christopher Covelli told the Lake County News-Sun.

Investigators believe the spill occurred after a pair of two-ton tanks filled with anhydrous ammonia being towed by a tractor started to leak. Anhydrous ammonia can cause "unconsciousness, and at worst case even death," Mr. Covelli said.

After breathing the toxic fumes, the 37 people were transported to various hospitals, including Vista Medical Center East in Waukegan, Ill.; Northwestern Lake Forest (Ill.) Hospital; Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville, Ill.; St. Catherine Hospital in Kenosha, Wis.; and the Naval Station Great Lakes Hospital in North Chicago, Ill.

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