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Unknown substance prompts evacuation at UPS center in Uniondale

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Multiple emergency responders were on scene Friday morning at a UPS facility in Uniondale after workers reported a potentially hazardous substance leaking from a package, according to a company spokeswoman and a News 12 Long Island report.

It was shortly after 5 a.m. on Dec. 6 when workers at a UPS distribution center at 300 Oak St. in Uniondale noticed a leaking package with a corrosive material. The unknown material in the package was smoking, the spokeswoman said.

The employees followed the company’s hazardous materials protocol and began to evacuate the building, the spokeswoman, Susan Rosenberg, said Friday morning.

“It was in an abundance of caution that we follow the protocols to get people away.” She estimated about 300 employees, including distribution staff and tractor-trailer drivers, were evacuated from the facility.

The center, which is classified as a medium-sized hub distribution facility, is where the company’s signature brown package trucks are dispatched from.

“We’re having a bit of a delay in the dispatch as we get back into it,” said Rosenberg, adding that the company didn’t expect the incident to cause that significant of a disruption because their regular delivery drivers hadn’t started their shifts yet when the incident occurred.

Emergency crews on scene had been “raising the doors” at the facility in an effort to circulate clean air into the building.

Sources said multiple ambulances had been called to the scene. According to Rosenberg, some people had reported feeling ill, but it was not immediately clear if anyone was taken to area hospitals.

Mid-morning on Friday, it was still unclear if employees had been given the all clear signal and permitted to return to work.

A spokesman for the Nassau County Fire Marshal’s Office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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