News 8 spoke with Bristol Fire Chief Jay Kolakoski, who said the fire department was initially called to the Faneuil Call Center at 32 Valley Street on reports of people feeling light-headed, or with headaches, but they were unsure why.
Once on the scene, firefighters entered the building with CO meters and discovered there were elevated levels of carbon monoxide. Firefighters immediately evacuated everyone from the building.
Once outside, more workers reported mild to moderate symptoms of CO poisoning, including light-headedness, headache, and difficulty breathing. Bristol Police and EMS crews joined firefighters on the scene to render aid.
According to Chief Kolakoski, 31 peple were transported to the hospital for treatment of CO poisoning symptoms. Several more people were treated at the scene, but an exact total was not determined. Kolakoski also noted that two people were treated for heat exhaustion outside as well.
It is not clear if the building had any CO detectors. When asked if that is a requirement for office buildings, Chief Kolakoski said it is not legally required to have a CO detector in an office building, but he highly recommends it.
At the time of the leak, construction crews were working on the ‘E’ floor of the building, but it has not yet been determined if the work on that floor had anything to do with the CO leak.
The building was ventilated, and CO levels have returned to normal in the building. Chief Kolakoski said workers have been allowed back in the building, but managers at the business allowed workers to go home for the day if they needed to.
The Bristol Fire Marshal has begun investigating what may have caused the leak.