Downtown Durham YMCA Pool Reopens After 40 children Hurt in Chemical Leak

Downtown Durham YMCA Pool Reopens After 40 children Hurt in Chemical Leak

DURHAM -- The downtown Durham YMCA is back open following a chemical leak that sickened dozens of children on Wednesday afternoon.

More than 40 people, including dozens of children, went to the hospital due to a chemical spill in the pool. The kids complained of nausea and difficulty breathing and the building had to be evacuated.

A total of 43 people were transported to the hospital: 40 children and two adults who were inside the YMCA, and one adult from a nearby building. Of those 43 people, six children were in serious condition on the scene but later downgraded in the emergency room.

The culprit -- sodium hypochlorite, a disinfecting property used in the pool that’s balanced out with sulfuric acid.

The original call for concern came from the YMCA building when one of the lifeguards reported a strong chemical odor by the pool pump room.

Earlier in the day, 100 kids swam in the pool and were taken back to their Club Boulevard Elementary location without any signs of distress.

Those kids were sent to Duke University Hospital and Duke Regional Hospital.

Officials are continuing to investigate to try and determine how to prevent this from happening again. They say the pool will remain closed until the investigation is completed.

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