“…Firefighters reported high levels of carbon monoxide in the building, and the remaining guests and employees were evacuated. The gas filtered up to the fifth floor from a pool heater on the ground floor…”
The death of one man and grave condition of another has South Charleston City Council members thinking of requiring hotels to install carbon monoxide detectors. Mayor Frank Mullens was still gathering information Tuesday evening from city fire and police officers at the Holiday Inn Express along Corridor G.
A construction worker was found dead in his hotel room Tuesday morning when other members of his crew went to wake him. The man’s roommate was unresponsive and was taken to Charleston Area Medical Center’s General Hospital, where he was in critical condition Tuesday evening.
Two others were taken from the hotel to St. Francis Hospital.
Mullens said he never had heard of anything like it.
“From what I gather right now, we’re looking at a tragic accident,” the mayor said. “I’m just speechless. I’ve never heard of anything like this happening before in my life.”
The hotel, which opened in July 1999, had no carbon monoxide detectors, according to South Charleston Fire Chief Greg Petry.
State law requires all homes with gas appliances built after 1998 to have carbon monoxide detectors, but there is no such requirement for hotels. Petry said he didn’t know of a single hotel in the area with such detectors.
Mullens said the city follows state building code but the one regarding carbon monoxide detectors only in homes didn’t make any sense.