Shetland Park hazmat

People stand outside Shetland Park in Salem Monday afternoon after a hazmat response forced Building 2 to be evacuated. 

SALEM — A hazmat issue involving rechargeable batteries at a company in Shetland Park forced part of the office complex to be evacuated Monday. 

Salem fire Lt. Peter Schaeublin said firefighters responded to Building 2 at 35 Congress St. after an employee at a company there reported that a battery was swelling and smoking. 

The battery is connected to two others; each battery weighs roughly 2.2 pounds. It's unclear what type of batteries are involved, but Schaeublin said the batteries combined are no bigger than a shoebox. 

The company, located on the second floor of the building on the Derby Wharf side, specializes in battery conditioning, a process which lengthens the life of a rechargeable battery. 

Schaeublin said the batteries appear to be stable, but officials called in a state police hazmat unit to make sure they can be moved.  

The building was evacuated. No injuries were reported. 

The initial report came in just after noon Monday, according to scanner reports. The city sent out an alert early Monday afternoon, warning residents to avoid the Shetland Park area. 

This story has been updated to correct the batteries' weight. Each battery weighs 2.2 pounds. 

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