14 people, including workers renovating Yale building, hospitalized for carbon monoxide poisoning

Jan 17, 2024, 2:09 PM | Updated: 2:50 pm

Fourteen people, including nine construction workers who were renovating a Yale University-owned building, were hospitalized for carbon monoxide poisoning on Wednesday.

One of the workers was found lying unconscious outside of the building, which is a couple of blocks from Yale’s New Haven campus, and was taken to a hospital’s hyperbaric chamber in Brooklyn, New York, where he was in critical condition, said Rick Fontana, New Haven’s emergency operations director. He said another worker was also in “pretty serious condition” but was uncertain where he was taken.

Of the 14 people who were hospitalized, nine were construction workers and five were Yale employees, said a spokesperson for Mayor Justin Elicker.

Emergency crews initially thought they were responding to a “regular medical call” early Wednesday when they brought the unconscious man to the hospital, Fontana said. However, an hour-and-a-half later, the hospital informed them that the worker had extremely high levels of carbon monoxide in his bloodstream.

Crews then returned to the location and found 13 people at the building with elevated carbon monoxide levels and complaining of headaches. It was later determined that they had been using a propane-fueled saw to cut concrete. Even though they were venting it, Fontana said the fumes were not exiting the building.

“That carbon monoxide, it’s not like you could smell it or see it or feel it,” he said. “Everybody thought that it was being vented properly until we were notified of this group of people.”

Fontana said a typical home carbon monoxide detector sounds an alarm when it detects 35 parts per million. In this situation, there were 350 parts per million, or 10 times the permissible level.

“There was a disaster averted here,” he said. “You could have had a lot more sick or a lot more death had this gone on for a longer period of time.”

Inhaling carbon monoxide fumes hinders the body from properly using oxygen and can harm organs, including the heart and brain.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the incident. A Yale spokesperson didn’t immediately reply to a message seeking comment.


This story was updated to correct that only nine of the 14 people who were hospitalized are construction workers. The other five are Yale employees.

United States News

Associated Press

UN adopts a resolution demanding that Sudan’s paramilitary force halt its siege of a Darfur city

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. Security Council adopted a resolution Thursday demanding that Sudan’s paramilitary force halt its siege of the only capital in the vast western region of Darfur that it doesn’t control where more than a million people are reportedly trapped. The resolution, which was approved by a vote of 14-0 with […]

1 hour ago

Associated Press

Sen. John Fetterman was at fault in car accident and seen going ‘high rate of speed,’ police say

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania Sen. John Fetterman was seen driving at a “high rate of speed” on Sunday morning just before he rear-ended another car on Interstate 70 in Maryland, according to a state police report. The police report said Fetterman was at fault in the crash. Both cars were towed and Fetterman, his […]

2 hours ago

Split panel image with Assistant U.S. Attorney General Kristen Clarke seen in a screenshot providin...

Kevin Stone

DOJ investigation of Phoenix Police Department finds civil rights violations, dysfunction

A yearslong U.S. Department of Justice investigation of the Phoenix Police Department found patterns of egregious civil rights violations, officials announced Thursday.

2 hours ago

Associated Press

Southern Poverty Law Center lays off employees amid restructuring

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The Southern Poverty Law Center, a legal and advocacy group, is laying off more than 60 employees, the union representing workers said Thursday. The Southern Poverty Law Center did not confirm the number but issued a statement saying the organization “is undergoing an organizational restructuring” that resulted in staff reductions. The […]

3 hours ago

Associated Press

Murder suspect killed, 2 police officers wounded in shootout at New Jersey hotel

A shootout at a New Jersey hotel ended with a murder suspect dead and two police officers wounded, authorities said. The shooting occurred late Wednesday at a complex in Woodbridge that houses the Raritan Hotel and the Royal Albert’s Palace Banquet Hall, the state Attorney General’s Office said. The suspect, whose name was not released, […]

3 hours ago

Follow @ktar923...

Sponsored Content by Collins Comfort Masters

Here's how to be worry-free when your A/C goes out in the middle of summer

PHOENIX -- As Arizona approaches another hot summer, Phoenix residents are likely to spend more time indoors.

Sponsored Articles


Sanderson Ford

3 new rides for 3 new road trips in Arizona

It's time for the Sanderson Ford Memorial Day sale with the Mighty Fine 69 Anniversary, as Sanderson Ford turned 69 years old in May.


DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.


Collins Comfort Masters

Here’s 1 way to ensure your family is drinking safe water

Water is maybe one of the most important resources in our lives, and especially if you have kids, you want them to have access to safe water.

14 people, including workers renovating Yale building, hospitalized for carbon monoxide poisoning