Five Iowa Hotel Workers Fall Ill

Carbon monoxide fumes were detected in the laundry room at the Sheraton.


West Des Moines firefighters and rescue crews were called to a hotel Monday morning when several employees reported feeling ill.

Crews arrived at 9:10 a.m. Monday at the Sheraton Hotel at 1800 50th St.

Elevated levels of carbon monoxide were in a first-floor laundry room, and the fumes were confined to the room, according to a news release.

Firefighters said a motor of an exterior exhaust fan for a laundry room boiler may have been to blame.

"There's a fan with the exhaust system that's supposed to send those fumes outside. It appears that may have stopped working and caused the carbon monoxide to build up in the room. It was contained in that laundry room and did not get out anywhere else in the hotel," said Mike Whitsell, a West Des Moines fire inspector.

Five people were transported to a Des Moines hospital. There is no word yet on their condition.

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