Hospital treats dozens involved in carbon monoxide leak - CBS46 News

Hospital treats dozens of students involved in carbon monoxide leak

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© Students being checked in to Hughes Spalding © Students being checked in to Hughes Spalding

The carbon monoxide leak at Finch Elementary School on Monday morning made for a hectic situation at Children's at Hughes Spalding.

More than 40 kids were rushed to the hospital. Eight were taken by ambulance and the rest were transported on two separate school buses.

All of the kids were treated and released, so it was a positive outcome at the hospital in what turned out to be a very crazy day.

When the hospital first found out about the leak, staffers immediately called for backup.

Dr. Naghma Khan, the medical director at the hospital, said that after the initial reports came out, they feared the worst. 

"We were really concerned when we heard patients had symptoms at the scene," Khan said. "We were concerned there were going to be a lot more."

Khan said the concern grew due to the age and size of the kids who were involved, which could have potentially made things worse.

"Carbon monoxide is heavier than oxygen so it settles down low on the ground," Khan said. "So the shorter you are, the more susceptible you are to getting carbon monoxide poisoning."

While the busloads of kids added to an already busy hospital, that was just the beginning because their parents weren't far behind.

Carlos Johnson told CBS Atlanta News that he had two kids at the school, one of whom was taken to the hospital.

"I dropped everything and came straight down," Johnson said. "That's literally exactly what I did as soon as I heard."

Johnson said it was scary not knowing what was going on.

"It's the silent killer, and they call it that for a reason," Johnson said. "Any time you are standing around and see kids passing out, it's like a scary movie almost."

Harriett Gray, another parent, brought her child to the hospital herself.

"I have hypertension," Gray said. "I'm about to fall out now. I'm about to go check myself out too. I'm so nervous I don't know what to do."

Once things slowed down at the hospital and doctors determined that all the kids were in good condition, their parents were able to give a big sigh of relief.

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