Glendale Costco evacuated due to freon leak

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By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- A freon leak prompted the evacuation of hundreds of customers inside a Glendale Costco Friday afternoon.

A spokesman said the leak occurred around 12:30pm as a technician was working on the refrigerator system.

"We were inside the store, and all we heard was a large pop," said customer Raymond Crump.

Up to 12 people were treated for minor respiratory irritation, according to a fire spokesman.  Three people were transported to an area hospital as a precaution.  Their conditions are unknown at this hour.

The leak was quickly stopped by HAZMAT crews on the scene.  They cleared the store to allow employees back inside to begin cleaning up.

The manager of the store said a mechanical error was to blame for the leak.

The store has since been reopened to the public.