Chlorine sickens about 50 people in 'freak accident' at Utah pool, police say

PLEASANT GROVE, Utah -- About 50 people were sickened on Tuesday -- some of them becoming "violently ill" -- due to chlorine gas at a pool in Utah in what police are calling a "freak accident."

The incident happened after a pump malfunctioned at Pleasant Grove Veterans Memorial Pool about 36 miles south of Salt Lake City. Too much chlorine was forced into the pool, police explained, and when the pump started back up again, the chlorine turned to gas.

Many of those affected were children. Pleasant Grove Police Capt. Britt Smith said people were coughing, vomiting and bleeding from their noses, and there were some reports of children going in and out of consciousness.

"We just saw lots of kids outside, nervous, crying, looking for their parents, trying to figure out what's going on, and a lot of kids coughing," witness Marie Scott told ABC4 in Salt Lake City.

The pool was evacuated because chlorine gas can be toxic.

In all, 26 of those who were sickened were transported to area hospitals, and about two dozen others sought out treatment on their own.

Authorities said they don't believe it was intentional, and none of the injuries are believed to be life-threatening.

ABC News and the Associated Press contributed to this report.
Copyright © 2019 WTVD-TV. All Rights Reserved.