MARANA, AZ - No air conditioning in a sweltering kitchen, that's what employees at a Marana McDonald's faced for nearly a week.
On Sunday several employees had reached their limit, suffering from heat-related illnesses.
Firefighters took at least three to the hospital, one in serious condition.
When firefighters responded to the call at the restaurant near Cortaro and Interstate 10 they thought they were dealing with a hazardous materials situation because so many people were saying they felt ill.
Crews checked out the patients and monitored the air in the restaurant for any source that might have made them ill.
The patients were complaining of feeling dizzy, light-headed and complained of having difficulty breathing, explained Northwest Fire District Capt. Adam Goldberg.
No customers in the evacuated restaurant had any complaints, only employees.
The store's manager reported the kitchen area had been without air conditioning for about a week, Goldberg said.
Ultimately, 11 employees were determined to be suffering from heat-related illnesses.
Three employees were taken to the hospital for treatment. A 19-year-old was in serious condition, according to Goldberg. The other two, a 42-year-old and 45-year-old female, were in stable condition.
The other eight employees were treated at the scene and released.
Air conditioning was restored to the restaurant at 5:30 p.m. on Sunday.