NEW INFO: Wausau Health Officials Blame Water Pump Failure for Chlorine Incident

By: WSAW Staff
By: WSAW Staff

A water pump with a blown fuse is being blamed for the hospitalization of 40 children and adults at a Wausau pool Friday, February 29.

North Central Health Care Facilities Chief Executive Officer Gary Bezucha says in a news release that a safety system stopped the injection of liquid chlorine and another chemical used to keep the pool sanitary.

However, Bezucha says the system may have allowed a small amount of chemicals to be injected into the water intake pipe during shutdown.

This created a gas bubble that was pushed into the pool when the water was turned back on.

When the bubble rose to the surface, those nearby experienced coughing and nausea.

The release says North Central took immediate measures to aid those affected, including evacuating the pool, bringing nurses to the scene and ensuring the children were showered, monitored and taken to hospitals.

North Central says as a result of the incident, it has adopted new backup procedures in the event of a similar event.

"Assuring the safety of those using our facilities is our top priority," says Bezucha.

Bezucha also says North Central apologizes to those affected and their families, and that it is working with its insurance carrier to ensure everyone's medical expenses are paid promptly and with a minimum of inconvenience.

Stay tuned to and NewsChannel 7 for further developments.

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