Police officers taken to hospital due to ‘noxious substance’

Two police officers have been taken to hospital after a mystery “noxious substance” was released inside a Belfast building.

Two further officers were affected – but did not require hospital treatment – while residents in the building at Ravenshill Reach Court were “displaying symptoms” the Police Service of Northern Ireland said.

Officers were responding to an unrelated 999 call in east Belfast when a suspected gas leak was detected in a communal area at around 9.15pm on Friday.

The building was evacuated and a nearby community centre was opened for residents while emergency crews attended the scene.

It has since been established that this was not a gas leak and at this time, we believe that some kind of noxious substance was released inside the building.

“Residents were able to return to their homes around 11.40pm and enquiries are ongoing to establish the source of the substance,” Inspector Dawson said.