WILLISTON, Vt. – Around 10:30 a.m. on Friday the Williston Fire Department responded to the Fairfield Inn by Marriott in Williston, due to a report of four employees experiencing difficulty breathing.
The fire department said that a guest of the hotel had left a can of bear attack deterrent in one of the rooms on the second floor. The unattended bear spray was accidentally discharged by a member of housekeeping.
Williston Fire Department says the spray contained 2% major capsaicinoids, which is stronger than police pepper spray and contains chemicals that causes irritation to the respiratory system.
Emergency teams say at the time of the incident there were around 30 people occupying the hotel and that three patients have been transported to UVM Medical Center for non-life-threatening injuries.
The fire department says they were able to mitigate the hazard in the building by using ventilation fans to clear the area. Staff and occupants were able to re-enter the building shortly after noon.