The Gwinnett County Fire and Emergency Services department responded to a hazmat incident at a business near the Mall of Georgia on Tuesday evening.

Firefighters responded to a call at 6:40 p.m. on August 14 at Costco Wholesale Warehouse at 1550 Mall of Georgia Boulevard NE in Buford. The 9-1-1 call center received a call from a store employee stating that smoke was coming out of the back of the building and that the building was being evacuated.

At 6:44 p.m. fire crews arrived on the scene and found the business was in the process of being evacuated. Firefighters began assisting with the evacuation and began searching the building for any remaining people.

“Once inside, firefighters encountered hazy conditions caused by a gas leak in a coolant system. Firefighters collaborated with on-site building maintenance to identify and shut off all control valves connected to the leak,” Gwinnett County Fire and Emergency Services said in a released statement.

After determining the incident was a gas leak, firefighters established a safe zone and then called the Hazardous Materials Team for assistance. Once the HazMat team arrived, they began ventilating the business with fans and used atmospheric monitoring devices to determine the air quality conditions inside of the structure.

The gas leak was said to be under control at 7:13 p.m.

One patient was treated by medical crews at the scene with a non-life threatening injury and was then released.

At 8:30 p.m., the building was deemed safe by the fire department and was turned back over to building managers. The building managers were allowed back inside along with maintenance staff to make the necessary repairs.

Gwinnett County Fire and Emergency Services equipment and personnel that responded to the scene were five fire engines, two trucks, two squads, two med units, four command staff vehicles and one HazMat unit.

Featured photo: Gwinnett County firefighters and a HazMat unit responded to Costco near the Mall of Georgia on Tuesday evening after a gas leak caused the business to be evacuated. Special photo.

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