Ventilation causes sickness at Gunnison hockey tourney

GUNNISON — Firefighters say an ice cleaning machine was the source of the carbon monoxide that sickened 54 people at a youth hockey tournament in western Colorado.

Gunnison fire marshal Dennis Spritzer said today that the indoor ice rink’s ventilation system failed, causing it to recirculate the polluted air rather than pull in outside air on Sunday.

Firefighters are trying to determine why the system’s damper failed to open and have contacted the company that made it.

Eight of the people who were sickened were hospitalized in serious condition. It wasn’t immediately known how they were doing today.

Spritzer said the city-owned rink didn’t have carbon monoxide detectors but the devices will be installed before it reopens.

He said there haven’t been any previous problems at the rink, which opened three years ago.



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