Chemicals at Splashtown Water Park in Texas Send 26 to Hospital


Twenty-six people were hospitalized with respiratory problems or skin irritation after exposure to bleach and sulfuric acid at Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Splashtown water park in Spring, Texas, on Saturday afternoon, officials said.

Harris County Fire Department spokeswoman Rachel Neutzler said one person was in critical condition Saturday evening.

Authorities evacuated the park around 15:30 local time.

Neutzler said the researchers do not believe that exposure to chemicals used to maintain pH balance was the result of an intentional act. He said it occurred in a shallow pool for children.

President Scott Seifert Spring Fire BrigadeHe said authorities decontaminated more than 60 people by having their eyes massaged and washing them under the hose of a ladder truck.

Chief Seifert said respiratory problems were caused by a combination of 35 percent sulfuric acid and 10 to 13 percent bleach.

Neutzler said 39 people who came into contact with the chemicals did not want to go to the hospital.

Investigators were examining a system in the park that injects chemicals into the water to keep the pH balance at 7, said Harris County judge Lina Hidalgo. When officials arrived, they tested the water and the pH balance was 7, said Harris County judge Lina Hidalgo.

“So we don’t know exactly what happened before that made people sick,” he said at a press conference.

Both bleach and sulfuric acid are used to keep pools clean and maintain a balanced pH, although researchers “examined the system that injects these chemicals into the pool to see if there is a malfunction, but this is still under investigation,” Neutzler said.

“These are the normal chemicals used every day in these facilities,” Neutzler said. “But these are certain chemicals that we believe cause respiratory and skin irritations. We just don’t know why. We don’t know if it was in excess. We don’t know if it was in the air. We don’t know if it was a malfunction.”

Officials said the park was last inspected for compliance with fire and life safety regulations on June 29 and health regulations in April.

Miss Hidalgo wrote: chirp“We have issued a closure order to investigate and ensure the park meets all requirements before it reopens,” he said.

Officials said the park will be closed until the investigation is complete.

“A small number of guests in one part of the park have reported that they are suffering from respiratory irritation,” Six Flags said in a statement.

“The safety of our guests and team member is always our top priority, and the park was cleared immediately while we were trying to identify a cause,” the company said. “Park is closed for today due to extreme caution.”

Ms. Hidalgo said she believes the park should regularly record pH levels, but no such logging is or has been found.

“But something went wrong and they should want to have systems where the system can record it as soon as something goes wrong – it would make sense,” he said.


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