MONTREAL: A suspected carbon monoxide leak at a Montreal primary school led to the hospitalization of 35 children and eight adults on Monday, local media reported.
A faulty heating system possibly caused a carbon monoxide leak that led dozens of students and personnel to be poisoned at Des Decouvreurs elementary school in LaSalle borough of the city of Montreal on Monday citing Head of Montreal Fire Department Francis Leduc.
The chief of Montreal’s fire department explained that a bad connection in the school’s heating system could have produced the leak, and the presence of carbon monoxide was hard to detect because of its odorless. Moreover, Leduc added that unlike most of the schools, Des Decouvreurs was not equipped with a carbon detector.
A spokesman for the ambulance service said students at Ecole des Decouvreurs in the city’s LaSalle neighbourhood reported nausea, dizziness and vomiting. Between 15 and 20 people, including one adult, were initially affected.
The children who felt sick are between the ages of six and 13. Nine students were taken to a hospital after they lost consciousness, while others after felt nauseous, dizzy, and vomited, according to the report.
Quebec Health Minister Danielle McCann stated that there would be a thorough investigation following the poisoning of the children and school staff. The elementary school will remain closed as the investigation is ongoing.
The illness could be related to carbon monoxide poisoning, but the cause has not been confirmed, Stephane Smith of Urgences-Sante said. In a letter to parents published online, the school administration raised the possibility of a problem related to the heating system. None of the student was reported to be in serious