Amazon employees sickened by unknown substance

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Several Amazon distribution center employees were treated for minor breathing difficulties after being exposed to an unknown substance Wednesday morning.

About 30 employees at the Plainfield location were taken to the hospital after being exposed to a substance similar to crushed red pepper.

Red pepper contains capsaicin, which gives it a spicy flavor but is also an irritant to the skin, eyes and respiratory system.

The workers were exposed when they opened the back of a semi trailer that arrived at the distribution center.

They were sent to local hospitals for treatment. Joe Studeville, a spokesman for St. Francis Hospitals, says ten patients were taken to their Mooresville hospital for observation and treatment.

He says that most, if not all of them, had been subjected to a decontamination process at the scene.

All patients had been released by 2:30 pm.