Chlorine bleach exposure at World's Fair Park sends kids to ER

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A trip to World's Fair Park to beat the heat took a turn for the worse on Thursday with reports of too much Chlorine in the fountains.

Members of both Rural Metro and the fire department responded around 1:00 p.m. to help treat people who were at the popular downtown destination.

The fire department's HazMat team was called to the scene as well.

More than a dozen children visiting from Blount County were taken to Children's Hospital to be checked out. Many were treated for minor eye and nasal irritation.

Authorities tested the water and found the levels to be 7 to 8 PPM, (parts per million). An acceptable range of Chlorine for these fountains is 3 to 5 PPM.

According to Chris Gallop with Public Building Authority, it appears a pump that was shut down due to a storm didn't work properly.

"We have changed our pump set to avoid this in the future," he said.

The fountains reopened about an hour later to the public.

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