BY Jack Davis, The Western JournalJune 26, 2023
1 year ago
 | June 26, 2023
1 year ago

One Dozen People Rushed to Treatment After Chemical Spill in Lazy River

Too much chlorine in the water sent a dozen people to a Houston hospital on Saturday.

The incident happened in the lazy river at Club Westside, a family sports fitness club owned by Jim "Mattress Mack" McIngvale, according to KRTK-TV.

The city's fire department tweeted that it "responded to a report of a chlorine spill with possible accidental ingestion in lazy river pool area at 1200 Wilcrest just before 5pm, today, June 24. 7 children and 3 adults have been transported to the hospital. Several went by private vehicle."

Houston Fire Chief Samuel Pena later tweeted that the situation likely was caused by "over-chlorination" and it was "under control."

"Cause appears to be an over-chlorination of the pool(s) Good work by @HoustonFire to quickly triage & transport people. 12 patients transported from the location Exposure to over-chlorination can provoke asthma, nausea, skin & eye irritation," he wrote.

No further reports were issued on the conditions of those hospitalized.


Emergency medicine physician Dr. Baruch Fertel said managing chemicals is an important part of pool safety, according to the Cleveland Clinic.

“It’s a great time of year. People have opened up their pools so their friends and family can cool off from the hot weather. However, everyone needs to maintain some basic safety rules when it comes to pool chemicals and equipment," he said.

“When you’re adding chemicals to a pool, always add the powder to the water, not the water to the powder. When even a little bit of water gets on some pool chemicals, something called ‘wetting’ occurs. Chemical wetting can cause a dangerous reaction and combustibility. That’s why it’s really important to add pool chemicals to the water," he said.

The website offered some tips about dealing with chlorine dangers in pools.

“When chlorine is added to a pool, it mixes with other things in the water, particularly from swimmers themselves (think sweat, dirt, skin cells, and yes, even urine and feces). The mixing of chlorine and these compounds creates chloramines,” the site explained.

“Chloramines are irritants that are formed from the reaction of mixing the free chlorine (hence 'chlor') and amine groups (hence 'amine') from organic matter. These are what cause extreme irritation to the skin and eyes after prolonged exposure,” it said.

The site continued, “Additionally, the fumes induce irritation of the respiratory tract causing coughing and breathing trouble. Because chloramine gas is heavier than air, it settles on top of the water, making it problematic for both swimmers and those nearby.”

“Indoor pools increase the risk of experiencing irritation from the accumulation of these fumes because of limited ventilation," it said.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Written by: Jack Davis, The Western Journal



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