A leak  from a forklift Thursday led to 13 employees at Chippewa Bi Products in Wisconsin being sent to the hospital for carbon monoxide poisoning, according to WQOW-TV. The incident took place at the rendering facility near Alma Center.


The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office issued a press release that said it got a call asking that EMTs be dispatched to Chippewa Bi Products at 9:50 a.m. Thursday. The person who called said that at least one person had passed out, and no one knew why.

 Alma Center firefighters, and EMTs from Alma Center and Black River Falls, came to the scene. They determined that several employees have been overcome by carbon monoxide.

The sheriff’s office said that 10 people had to be taken to Black River Memorial Hospital,  but WQOW reported that 13 were transported there. According to the TV station, four victims were later transported to other hospitals for treatment, and nine were treated and released. 

Propane forklifts were  being used in the Chippewa Bi Products building where the employees got ill, and authorities believe one of the forklifts had a mechanical problem and released the toxic carbon monoxide fumes.

In turn, Chippewa Bi Products said that it has carbon monoxide detectors, and that one did go off Thursday.

The plant did reopen after the incident Thursday, with the company saying it had retified the problem with the forklift.


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