Buffalo Wild Wings Worker Dead In Chemical Mishap

Jeff Wilcox, CC BY 2.0

Never mix ammonia and bleach!

Nov 07, 2019

BURLINGTON, Mass. (AP) — Massachusetts authorities say a Buffalo Wild Wings employee has died and at least 10 people have been hospitalized following a chemical mixture at the restaurant.

WHDH-TV reports officials responding Thursday night to reports of a chemical reaction in the kitchen area found a male employee suffering from nausea.

Burlington police say they think he inhaled fumes from a cleaning agent.

[UPDATE: Officials have now confirmed our suspicion – reported here earlier – that the chemicals involved are combination is ammonia and bleach, which produce deadly chlorine gas … details below. – Ed.]

The employee, whose name wasn’t immediately released, was taken to a hospital where he later died.

Authorities evacuated the restaurant and urged anyone who was inside at the time to get medical treatment, if needed.

A Buffalo Wild Wings statement says the company is “shocked and saddened” and working with the franchisee and authorities.

The suburban Boston sports bar will remain closed while the investigation continues.

Ammonia & Bleach

The Laundry Alternative Inc. – One of the most common hazards occurs when chlorine bleach is mixed with ammonia or acids.

The combination of ammonia and bleach produces dangerous chlorine gas, which in small doses can cause irritation to the eyes, skin and respiratory tract. In large doses, it can kill.

Chlorine gas, and later mustard gas, were actually used in WWI & WWII.

One way this occurs is when people disinfect an area with bleach before cleaning. For example, you could use bleach to disinfect the sink area, then wash the dishes with an antibacterial dish soap which contains ammonia.

If an area has been cleaned with other products, make sure the area is thoroughly rinsed with uncontaminated water before bleach is used.

PREVIOUSLY: 

Top 10 Chain Restaurants in America (Sorry, Olive Garden)

“Who Crapped In My Wings?”; Fecal Germs at B-Dubs

How Housework Can Make You Sick