Freeport, ME — Two adults and a child were taken to a hospital Tuesday with elevated carbon monoxide levels after an incident at a Freeport hotel.
Freeport fire officials said a carbon monoxide alarm sounded at the Comfort Suites on Route 1 Monday and a maintenance worker replaced it with a new alarm.
Fire officials said they did not get the message until Tuesday morning and responded to the hotel.
“I walked in the lobby and had 175 parts per million on CO, started to evacuate, pulled the fire alarm and thankfully everyone’s out, and we hope that everyone’s OK that was transported,” Freeport Fire Chief Charles Jordan said.
Jordan said the worker should have called 911.
“It certainly could have ended up being a lot worse than it was,” Jordan said.
Jordan said a faulty hot water heater in a utility room next to the room where the three people hospitalized were staying is what caused the carbon monoxide leak.
He said carbon monoxide levels in that area had reached 675 parts per million.
“Which is levels where you’re going to start to be dizzy and potentially become unconscious, etc,” Jordan said.
Jordan said the hotel was evacuated while maintenance workers replaced the hot water heater.
In addition to the three people hospitalized, several guests were checked out by first responders at the scene for symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Jordan said evacuated guests will not be allowed to stay the night at the hotel but were allowed to go back in and retrieve their items.
Jordan added he does not want to cast blame for the incident but instead, wants it to serve as a learning experience.
“If you have a problem, call 911. If you don’t want to call 911, the other option is to call the business line of the dispatch center that handles your town. Because that will be a 24-hour attended location. Fire departments these days, unless they are huge, don’t have 24-hour attended lines at their station,” Jordan said.