Carbon Monoxide Scare at Carroll-sponsored tournament

March 19th, 2009

High levels of carbon monoxide in the Gilmour Academy Ice Arena led to about 100 people being transported to area hospitals Saturday night during the John Carroll University-hosted Division I American Collegiate Hockey Association men’s national collegiate hockey championship.

The Gates Mills Fire Department was called to the scene after several people said they felt ill. The GMFD closed the facility after determining that there was a high level of carbon monoxide in the building.

According to Jenny Popis, communications manager for the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission, three factors caused the situation.

First, the ice grooming equipment was not functioning properly. Second, the ventilation system did not provide sufficient outside air.

Finally, team buses were parked and running in close proximity to the fresh air intake of the arena.

Games on Saturday featuring Kent State, Oklahoma, Lindewood and Penn State were cancelled.

The GMFD worked through the night Saturday and into the morning on Sunday to test the building against further threats.

After the GMFD determined that there were no elevated levels of carbon monoxide and deemed the facility safe for patrons, the ice rink was reopened and tournaments games resumed on Sunday.

According to Popis, the scare was an unprecedented incident that she does not foresee occurring again.

The GMFD has continued to monitor the situation over the past few days.