Southbridge, Mass. - At 6:18 pm on Wednesday, June 22nd, the Southbridge Police Department received a call for a woman slumped over the wheel of a vehicle in the parking lot of Brothers Pizza, 485 E Main St. At 6:20 pm officers arrived to observe a strong odor of chemicals coming from the vehicle and immediately requested Southbridge Fire Department and EMS to assist. Upon the arrival of fire department personnel, it was immediately determined there were not sufficient resources to handle the situation within the town, thus a Tier 1 Hazardous Materials (HAZMAT) response from the Massachusetts Department of Fire Services (DFS) was requested.
As of 9 pm, June 22nd, units remained on the scene and the death is still being investigated. At this point, it is unclear if the death appears accidental or intentional in nature.
Agencies that responded to the incident included the Southbridge Police Department, Southbridge Fire Department, Southbridge EMS, and the Massachusetts Department of Fire Services.
Massachusetts Department of Fire Services utilizes a Tier 1 (Hazardous & Risk Assessment) HAZMAT response for " Suspicious Substances, Open or Loose Suspicious Powders" per the DFS website link. The Massachusetts DFS supplies multiple specialized resources to towns within the state who would not normally require the personnel and equipment to handle these types of major incidents.
Disclaimer: This is a preliminary report containing information gained through publicly available means and has not been officially verified with the involved agencies.