Possible carbon monoxide exposure 'major eye opener' for St. John's arena owner

After nearly 80 people went to hospital on Friday due to possible exposure to carbon monoxide at a St. John's arena, a part owner of the rink says he wants to make sure the building is safe for young players.

Patrick Yetman, a hockey coach and minority owner of the Bussey Arena, said there'll be no one on the ice again until staff figures out what went wrong. 

"We're investigating the situation ourselves to take measures and reassurances for ourselves to make sure this incident doesn't happen again," he said.

"We're going to be reviewing everything and looking into things before we reopen."

Yetman said staff at the arena had been working on the Zamboni Friday while a game was being played, but weren't aware that the ice resurfacer was producing additional carbon monoxide.

"The Zamboni was in the Zamboni bay, which is kind of like a garage, and the outside door was open to prevent this from happening, but I guess somehow it did," he said.

There are carbon monoxide detectors in enclosed spaces, like mechanical rooms and the Zamboni bay, Yetman said, but the gas didn't reach those sensors.

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Jacob Worek