August 26, 2010 Statement on Aug. 26 Building Evacuation
Press Contact: Matt Raymond (202) 707-0020
This morning in the Library of Congress Madison Building, in a ground-floor computer area, there was a discharge of the gas-based fire-suppression system. An on-site review by D.C. Fire and EMS found no evidence of fire. The forceful release of the system (which is normal) broke a few ceiling tiles and made some dust go airborne.
Two employees working in the immediate area evacuated the space, and they and a floor warden in the immediate area were checked out by health officials. Several employees who were evacuating the building in response to the alarm passed by doors leading to the affected area from which a cloud of airborne dust emerged. They too were examined on the scene. Two employees were transported to George Washington University Hospital for further evaluation. Both were treated and discharged.
The incident caused the evacuation of the Madison Building. The computer lab where the incident occurred has been thoroughly cleaned by the Architect of the Capitol and has been re-occupied.