|Trinity Standard - Local News
Copyright 2013 - Polk County Publishing Company
Chlorine gas leak sends one to hospital
Trinity Standard -
TRINITY – A chlorine gas leak at a water treatment plant sent one man to the hospital and prompted concerns at Camp Olympia Sunday, Feb. 24. According to Trinity County Sheriff Woody Wallace, his office received a 9-1-1 call from a worker at the camp advising them of the leak inside a camp building. "After we received the call, the worker was unresponsive and we could not contact him," Wallace said, adding they later learned he had collapsed from breathing the gas. Wallace said steps were taken to evacuate the youth camp located off FM 3188 northeast of Trinity. "We were in the process of beginning to also evacuate the area around the camp when the Trinity Volunteer Fire Department was able to resolve the situation," the sheriff said. Wallace said when firefighters arrived at the scene, they sent in men dressed in their protective gear that included breathing masks and tanks. The firefighters were able to both rescue the downed worker and shut off the leaking gas. "The gas was confined to the one building and no one else was injured or directly exposed to the chlorine gas," Wallace said. The worker was taken to East Texas Medical Center-Trinity where he was treated and released. Camp Director Tommy Ferguson said the incident appears to be the result of human error when the worker apparently turned a valve on a chlorine tank the wrong way at the camp's water treatment plant. "We contract out the operation of the plant to another company so it wasn't a camp employee," he explained. Ferguson said after the accident, the worker did the smart thing when he called for help. Because it was a Sunday, the youth camp was not heavily occupied. Ferguson said other than staff, the only people at the camp were members of a group of high school students who were in the process of completing a weekend camping expedition. "We isolated everyone until we got the all-clear," he said. "It really didn't taken very long from the time that we were notified of the problem until it was resolved. Burglary warning In other business, Wallace issued a warning to residents of the Glendale area about a series of thefts and burglaries reported recently in their area. He said about a half dozen incidents had occurred in the area of the Glendale-Holly Road, many involving copper thefts. "Residents of the area need to take precautions. They need to keep an eye on things and lock up their property," he said. He is advising people to inscribe their names and driver's license numbers on their property as well as to take photos of items that could be stolen. "If we have a photo to help us locate a stolen item, the chances of recovering it are greatly increased," Wallace said.