A New York restaurant manager is dead as the suspected result of a carbon monoxide leak in a New York mall’s Legal Sea Foods restaurant. Though the investigation is ongoing into what exactly caused the leak, which has claimed one life and impacted many more, it is believed that the issue originated with a faulty water heater for the Long Island restaurant. In addition to the one fatality, at least 29 others were hospitalized in nearby New York hospitals and treated in connection with carbon monoxide poisoning. No other deaths have since been reported in connection with the leak.
Authorities believe that the fumes were spread around the basement of the New York restaurant by the ventilation systems. The Legal Sea Foods restaurant was inspected previously and no problems were found regarding the heating system. It is believed that a faulty flue pipe could have been the specific cause of the accident, and according to Chief Fire Marshal Terence McNally the Legal Sea Foods restaurant has been issued a citation for the equipment.
The initial call regarding a problem at the restaurant was made to New York’s Suffolk County Police, alerting them that a woman had fell and hit her head in the basement of Legal Sea Foods. It was only later, upon the arrival of responding officials that it was discovered that a larger problem was at hand. Police and medical responders arrived to the scene of the New York restaurant and as they searched the facility quickly noticed that something did not feel right. They began to feel dizzy and nauseated and discovered the cause as soon as they checked the carbon monoxide levels inside the building.
When New York’s Suffolk County Police and fire officials evacuated the area, they found restaurant manager Steven Nelson, 55, unconscious in the basement. Nelson, along with the woman whom the initial call was regarding, were both transported to a local New York hospital where Nelson was eventually pronounced dead. The condition of the unidentified woman, for whom the initial call went out, has not yet been determined. As of present, the New York mall carbon monoxide leak has left one man reported dead and 29 more hospitalized.
Officials sent the 29 other individuals to local hospitals for treatment, and as a precaution the two neighboring buildings to the Legal Sea Foods restaurant were also evacuated. The Walt Whitman shops, and the mall itself were not totally closed, but the the Legal Sea Foods restaurant and its immediate neighboring stores were closed for business as authorities further investigated the leak. Although the exact time of the leak has not been officially determined, the first call to police regarding the fallen woman in the basement was placed shortly after 6:00 p.m. Saturday.
As investigating New York officials believe that the initial carbon monoxide leak had to do with a faulty flue pipe, the investigation will focus around that premise. The Boston-based Legal Sea Foods issued a statement via Twitter, giving their condolences to Nelson’s family about their loss. Carbon monoxide is usually a silent killer at night however the New York mall restaurant leak shows that this silent killer can also strike during the day and do quite a bit of damage.
The damage as of now is that the New York carbon monoxide leak has killed one man and hospitalized at least 29 others. Officials hope to understand all of the details surrounding the leak as soon as possible.
By Daniel Worku