Furry Convention in Chicago-Area Hotel Disrupted by Chlorine Gas Outbreak
It sounds like the plot of a schlocky police procedural TV drama, but on Saturday night, 19 people wound up in the hospital in the suburbs of Chicago after they were sickened by exposure to chlorine gas in an apparently deliberate attack during the 2014 Midwest FurFest convention at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare hotel. Several thousand people were evacuated from the hotel in the early morning hours, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Many of the affected hotel guests had checked in for the annual convention, also referred to as “Anthrocon,” in which participants dress up and socialize in animal costumes. The Associated Press brought word about the suspicious chemically fueled interruption later that morning (via The Salt Lake Tribune):
Nineteen people who became nauseous or dizzy were treated at local hospitals, and at least 18 were released shortly thereafter.
The source of the gas was apparently chlorine powder left in a 9th-floor stairwell at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare, according to the Rosemont Public Safety Department. Investigators believe the gas was created intentionally and are treating it as a criminal matter.
[…] Guests were allowed to return a few hours later after the hotel had been decontaminated, and by mid-morning the furries were pouring back into the hotel for more activities, chat with each other and make their way to a outdoor courtyard where they took part in a group exercise session, with foxes, dragons and other characters getting an aerobic workout.
Other costumed guests who did not need immediate medical attention were shepherded into a dog show across the street from the hotel, the AP also reported.
–Posted by Kasia Anderson’TIS THE REASON…
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