On Friday December 21st 2012, the Oyster Bay and Atlantic Steamer Fire Companies were alerted for an “odor of gas” at the Bank of America 157 South Street. The first chief to arrive was Atlantic Steamer Fire Co 1st Assistant Chief Rob Wallas (5501). Upon entering the building he was met with numerous workers complaining of symptoms of CO poisoning ranging from headaches, fatigue, and nausea. At that time his carbon monoxide detector (which all chiefs carry on every call) read an excess of 180ppm (the normal rate is between 0 and 9).
Chief wallas then had the bank evacuated, and requested that EMS respond to treat the patients, and had fire crews investigate further to attempt to find the source of the carbon monoxide.
Chief Frank Mantegari (5500) arrived and assumed the roll as the incident commander. A total of 5 patients were transported to local hospitals by ambulances from Oyster Bay Fire Co, East Norwich Fire Co and the Syosset Fire Department, all with non-life threatening injuries. Both fire companies remained on the scene for 2 hrs while National Grid investigated further.
The cause of the high CO readings was attributed to a faulty gas boiler.