Part of the Health Sciences Centre in Winnipeg was evacuated Thursday afternoon after a chemical spill in one of the hospital's buildings. ​

The incident happened just before 2 p.m. in the hospital's Thorlakson Building at 820 Sherbrook St.

Winnipeg Regional Health Authority officials said 50 gallons of Formalin, a chemical similar to formaldehyde was spilled.

The chemical is highly flammable and corrosive but typically not deadly unless there is a prolonged exposure in a large quantity.

Health Sciences Centre evacuation

Emergency crews were on hand at the Health Sciences Centre Thursday afternoon after a chemical spill forced the evacuation of the hospital's Thorlakson Building. (Lyzaville Sale/CBC)

One person was exposed to the chemical, but they were decontaminated and will be fine, according to officials.

A total of about 500 people, including 14 patients — six of which were children — were forced out of the building. They were taken to other areas of the hospital.

WRHA officials said the big interruption at the hospital would be on lab tests.

As a result, five elective surgeries had to be cancelled, and wait times at the hospital’s emergency room were expected to increase in the evening.

Ambulance services have been rerouted to alleviate some of the pressure on the ER.

Officials said the air quality in the building will continue to be monitored, and people will be allowed back in the building Thursday evening.

Officials expected services to be back to normal by Friday.