February 21, 2024


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Carpet cleaning van pumped carbon monoxide into apartments near UW campus, authorities say | Local News


Residents evacuated from an apartment complex near UW’s campus Monday afternoon after a carpet cleaning van left running outside pumped potentially lethal levels of carbon monoxide into the building, the Madison Fire Department said.

Fire crews arrived to the scene just after 5:30 p.m. after Madison Gas and Electric alerted them of the high carbon monoxide levels at X01 Apartments, a private apartment complex located at 1001 University Ave., said Cynthia Schuster, a spokesperson for the Fire Department.

MGE staff got CO readings of about 500 parts per million on the upper floor of the building, Schuster said. Firefighters at the scene found that some residents in the building had taken down their CO detectors, removed the batteries and threw them in the hallway, Schuster said.

The carpet cleaning service’s van had been left running next to an exterior stairwell door, Schuster said.

Upon arrival, fire crews ventilated the building with fans as they went door-to-door and evacuated the 128-unit complex. Firefighters found many of the apartments had high CO readings as they cleared the building, Schuster said.

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Residents were evacuated from the complex for about two hours while firefighters and MGE staff ventilated the building. Paramedics assessed two people for mild symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning but they did not go to the hospital, Schuster said.


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