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A dozen employees ill from carbon monoxide in Litchfield

Union Leader Correspondent

January 23. 2013 2:41PM
About a dozen employees at Optimum Building Services in Litchfield reported feeling ill on Wednesday. Firefighters found elevated carbon monoxide levels in the building. (KIM HOUGHTON PHOTO)

LITCHFIELD -- Two people were transported by ambulance and about 10 others were treated at the scene Wednesday after becoming ill from elevated carbon monoxide levels at a local business.

Fire crews responded shortly after noon to Optimum Building Systems at 12 Colby Road for a medical call.

Fire Chief Frank Fraitzl said firefighters found significant levels of carbon monoxide in the building, which contains offices and a warehouse.

Two employees were transported to an area hospital for carbon monoxide poisoning and eight to 10 others were treated at the scene for less severe symptoms, Fraitzl said.

Fraitzl said he believes a equipment in the building raised the carbon monoxide levels. He would not say how high those levels were.

The building was evacuated on Wednesday afternoon while crews ventilated the building, and about a dozen individuals returned to work by 2 p.m.

"All levels are back to normal,"?Fraitzl said, adding officials from the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration have been contacted and will investigate.

The chief did not release the names of the two employees taken to Elliot Hospital in Manchester, nor did he know their condition.

According to its website, Optimum Building Systems and Management, Inc., specializes in open-shop drywall management for large scale projects, providing drywall installation, framing, trim work, commercial insulation and more.

The company recently partnered with Rigid Building Systems, which, according to its website, is the fastest growing pre-engineered building system manufacturer in the country.

Assisting the Litchfield Fire Department were fire crews from Londonderry, Hudson and Bedford, in addition to AMR ambulance.

Public Safety Health Litchfield

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