Who Forted? Magazine

Unexplained Illness Shuts Down an Entire Wal-Mart, Leaves Authorities Baffled

Pennsylvania shoppers fall mysteriously illl in a Wal-Mart shopping centerA “mysterious illness” that caused nausea, vomiting, and upper respiratory issues caused the evacuation and shut down of an entire Wal-Mart shopping center in Pennsylvania on Saturday, and officials still have no idea what caused the strange event.

Firefighters from Center Township were called to the store at around 7:00 PM on Saturday after both employees and customers began vomiting and having trouble breathing. Wal-Mart employees believed the cause of the odd event was emanating from the grocery section, roping it off from customers before the sickness began overtaking the rest of the store.

Center Twp. Fire Chief Bill Brucker mentioned feeling his airways close up when called to investigate, but couldn’t explain it.

“I wasn’t back there long before I started to feel something in my throat,” Brucker told the Beaver County Times. “I couldn’t pinpoint a smell or a cause, though.”

At least two customers were affected so badly that they were rushed to the hospital in ambulances, with at least another three driven by car.

When the firefighter’s own air quality tests didn’t turn up anything odd, they called in the county’s hazmat team who also came up empty handed, though Brucker wondered if that might have anything to do with the fact that the store’s air conditioning had been reversed to filter the air by the time the team had arrived.

As of now, the store has been re-opened without any further incidents of unexplained sicknesses, Wal-Mart has not issued a statement, and no medical test results from those who fell ill have been released.

“I don’t know if we’ll ever find out the cause,” Brucker said.

Could it have been the result mutant-irradiated meat sold at low, low prices? Perhaps a secret government weapon tested on the unknowing masses? Vengeance from the spirits of the Native American burial ground sitting below the foundations of the Wal-Mart Supercenter? Who knows, but I think one online commenter is on to something:

Hoverround fumes are making us all sick

Greg Newkirk

Greg Newkirk

Senior Editor at Who Forted
Documentary film-maker, professional monster chaser, and mystery monger, Greg is the senior editor for Who Forted? 'Zine. When he's not occupied by writing about the wide world of the weird, he's busy directing and editing documentary films like The Bigfoot Hunter: Still Searching or writing about offbeat travel for Roadtrippers. He's currently in production on his new project: an original documentary web series titled Planet Weird. He currently lives in Cincinnati.
Greg Newkirk
Greg Newkirk

5 Comments

    • Greg Newkirk

      01/15/2013 at 4:05 PM

      Judging from the kinds of farts I’ve witnessed from Wal-Mart clientele, I would not be surprised.

  1. Brian Parsons

    01/17/2013 at 2:50 PM

    Doutful it was methane. There was a Walmart in northeast Ohio (Garfield Heights) that was shut down due to constant methane leakage. The store had been built on a former landfill and the entire area was constantly crumbling. Plumbing had been an issue and bathrooms were provided in trailers. Associates often felt dizzy and confused from the methane, but nothing like vomiting.

    My guess is this was from a chain reaction/fear event. Once one person gets sick and others join in there is a fear that overcomes everyone else. Anything biological would have been found or would have resurfaced after re-opening.

  2. robert

    06/29/2014 at 8:27 AM

    I used to work at the Walmart this happened at I was off that night but I heard that a customer had used pepper spray don’t know how true that is though

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