4 first responders, 16 others affected by carbon monoxide at Dallas homeless shelter
A Dallas Fire-Rescue crew responded to a medical call about one patient when others at the shelter began saying they felt sick
The Dallas Morning News
DALLAS — Sixteen people at The Bridge and four Dallas Fire-Rescue workers were taken to hospitals Sunday morning after carbon monoxide was detected at the homeless shelter.
Dallas Fire-Rescue was called about 11 a.m. to the shelter in the 1800 block of Corsicana Street in downtown Dallas. While they were there for a medical call involving one patient, other people started to approach the crew, complaining of light-headedness, nausea and headaches, spokesman Jason Evans said in a written statement.
They began to suspect a “common denominator" and checked for carbon monoxide, Evans said. Once firefighters got a positive reading on their carbon monoxide detector, they called for more help, including a hazmat team.
The hazmat team determined that the source of the gas was probably clothing dryers, Evans said. The team ventilated the welcome center after shutting the gas off.
About 200 people were evacuated from the shelter, Evans said.
Sixteen people were taken to hospitals around Dallas, including Baylor University Medical Center, Parkland Memorial Hospital and Methodist Dallas Medical Center. Several more were examined at the scene but declined to be taken to a hospital, Evans said.
Four Dallas Fire-Rescue workers were also taken to the hospital after they were exposed to carbon monoxide, Evans said.
Information about the conditions of the people transported was not provided.
Nick Colletti, chief development officer of The Bridge, said Dallas Fire-Rescue officials deemed the affected building — the welcome center — operational for use again as of 2 p.m. No other buildings on the campus were affected, he said.
Colletti said the staff decided to wait until 8 p.m. to resume use of the building to be safe.
He said people will be able to stay at The Bridge like normal Sunday night.
Evans said the timing was fortunate. He told reporters that had it been later in the evening, people could have gone to sleep at The Bridge and never woken up.
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