On Wednesday, September 24, 2014 at around 6:09PM, we responded to 2025 California Street on the report of a strong odor of “rotten eggs” permeating the air. When officers arrived on-scene, they could indeed smell a chemical substance initially thought to be natural gas. A series of evacuations promptly began at 2025 California Street during which time four of our officers became overpowered by the fumes and were treated and released by medical personnel at the scene.
Evacuations of 2025 California Street proceeded at which time officers also moved onto 2017 California Street to commence with evacuations. Residents of 2035 California Street were asked to shelter-in-place. Those displaced by the evacuations were sent to a local community center nearby where the Red Cross assisted them throughout the evening and into the next morning.
Mountain View Fire Department along with the HAZMAT team from Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety were on site to assist with clearing the apartment building. PG&E also responded to California Street to shut-off gas lines. When it was safe enough for HAZMAT to proceed into 2025 California Street, teams made entry into one particular unit where they found two deceased victims. Additionally, chemical substances were located within that same unit, specifically, calcium sulfide and sulfuric acid, which create the by-products sulfur dioxide and hydrogen sulfide.
While we are continuing to investigate this case, at this point in time the deaths of our two victims appear to be the result of a suicide along with one accidental death. One of the victims has been identified as 53 year-old Lian Liu, a male out of Mountain View, however we are not releasing any information about the other victim who is a juvenile. We ask that you please respect the privacy of the those involved in this extremely unfortunate incident and offer your continued support to those in our community.
If you, or someone you know, is contemplating suicide, please reach out to us by calling 911 in an emergency. If you need help, we are here for you as is the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.