Chlorine Leak at Parkwood YMCA Sends Some to Hospital

When Steve Bowser drove up to the Parkwood YMCA in Haslett today he knew he wouldn't be working out, at least not there.

"I swim Monday, Wednesday, Friday usually.... and everything's fine normally," said Bowser

But everything wasn't fine today. The building was evacuated after patrons ran out complaining of severe throat and eye irritation.

"What we had here was a chlorine leak, a liquid chlorine leak. There was a pump. It sounds like one of the lines on it broke. The leak was about 20 gallons," said Mark Hornberger, the Meridian Twp. Fire Inspector.

Hazmat crews were called to the scene to mobilize the leak and air out intense fumes inside the building.

"We're probably going to open up the whole building, use fans and blow the entire building out... get the whole thing cleaned up," said Hornberger.

A number of people were evaluated when they left the building. Three were taken to the hospital for treatment.

"The biggest thing here is getting them into the fresh air away from that environment and then after that giving them therapy to open up their lung passages. If worst comes to worst, giving them medication that will help neutralize or help assist your body to rid itself of the chlorine exposure," said Dr. Greg Fuller, an Emergency Room Physician at Sparrow

Those individuals are expected to be okay because they fled quickly. Fire investigators are still trying to figure out exactly what type of mechanical failure caused the leak.


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