Burlington splash pad closed indefinitely after chemical accident

BURLINGTON – The Burlington splash pad has been shut down after a chemical leak incapacitated a city staff member on Monday.

The staff member was on site at the splash pad when exposed to the chemicals, but the person was able to call Burlington Rural Fire Chief Karter Lesmann before collapsing. Lesmann arrived on the scene and performed life-saving measures until an ambulance arrived.

“I don’t know 100 percent what caused it. A Fargo company had been working on it and adjusting the levels of chemicals. It looked like an injection line wasn’t where it was supposed to be. So, they walked right into a cloud of vapor,” Lesmann said. “I just got called there as a responder, but there were no meters or detectors. It’s hard to protect yourself if you’re not going to spend the money to do it.”

Lesmann said that the pad will be closed until repairs and updates have been done to ensure proper ventilation and the facility is in compliance with health and safety rules. However, Lesmann was unsure how long Burlington residents would be without a local option to cool off and beat the heat.

“That’s a good question. There’s a lot of work that needs to be done, and it’s going to cost a lot of money,” Lesmann said.


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