Wheeling Hospital Defuses Situation

A local man, apparently suffering from a mental health condition, drove to Wheeling Hospital on Sunday morning claiming to have ingested poison. The man also said he had “dangerous items” in his truck, prompting hospital security personnel to call city police and firefighters to the facility.

Hospital spokesman Gregg Warren said the man pulled his vehicle up to the emergency room entrance where security approached him, as is routine for anyone other than an ambulance driving into that location.

“The man presented himself at the emergency room entrance, and security immediately responded with a wheelchair like they do for anyone pulling up there,” Warren said.

“The man told security that he had ingested some poison and that he had dangerous items in his vehicle.”

Security then called Wheeling police and firefighters to the scene. The man also was asked to move his vehicle away from the hospital building, which he did.

Warren said first responders arrived within minutes of the call. Police secured the parking lot to which the man had moved his vehicle. The vehicle was searched.

“Nothing was found that would harm anyone when police searched his vehicle,” Warren noted.

Hospital personnel examined the man and determined he had not ingested any harmful substances.

He was kept overnight at the hospital for observation and was expected to be transported to a mental health facility Monday.

“We’re proud of our security personnel and the quick response of the first responders. Security did a good job handling the situation,” Warren added.