By Siva Loho
“The chemical leak affected 13 people. Two of them are still under doctors’ supervision,” Khon Kaen Provincial Organisation chief administrator Pattanawadee Channuan said.
She said most victims were aged between eight and 12 while a few swimming pool staff had been affected.
She said swimmers and staff started smelling the chemical at about 7.30pm on Sunday and soon after that children started vomiting.
“Parents and staff at the swimming pool quickly helped children out of the pool and called ambulances,” she said.
Pattanawadee said some victims lost consciousness because they were likely had greater exposure to the chemical than others.
She said the chemical was soda ash, which was used to clean swimming pools.
She said staff planned to use soda ash and some other chemicals to clean the swimming pool after it was closed at 8pm on Sunday.
The swimming pool is the province’s main pool. It has used the cleaning method for more than two decades.
“We have found that the container used to keep the soda ash was not tightly closed,” Pattanawadee said.
Anurak Suikraduang, a staff member at the pool, said soon after the chemical containers brought out in preparation for the cleaning job the smell began circulating.
Pattanawadee said the swimming pool would be closed for two days so measures could be put in place to ensure the incident was not repeated.