Emergency Services officials and an RCMP officer confer inside the Collicutt Centre during its evacuation Monday.

Ammonia leak prompts evacuation at Collicutt Centre

An ammonia leak at the Collicutt Centre in Red Deer forced the evacuation of hundreds of people just before noon on Monday.

The Collicutt Centre is expected to open today following an evacuation that caused hundreds to flee from the recreation facility on Monday.

Red Deer Emergency Services platoon chief Randy Kidd said a maintenance crew was making a repair on the ammonia tanks in the ice plant when the crew ran into trouble and triggered an ammonia leak just before noon. Kidd said the crew was repairing a faulty part and there was no leak previously.

The facility evacuation process was enacted to ensure public safety. There were no reported injuries.

“(The leak) has been repaired,” said Kidd. “It was fairly simple to do. Now it’s just a matter getting the residual product vented. Being such a big building, it takes a long time to replace all the air in the building.”

Red Deer Transit was put on alert but their resources were not required. Most people left the area and others went to Hunting Hills High School. The Collicutt Centre was completely evacuated by 12:30 p.m.

Emergency Services crews including the hazardous materials teams spent several hours venting the residual product from the building.

Kidd said there was still a faint smell of ammonia in the building so rather than having people coming in and panicking, they felt it was more prudent to keep the facility closed overnight as a precautionary measure.

Red Deer Emergency Services crews will continue to monitor the air quality both inside and outside the facility as needed to ensure public safety.

“There’s no real problem with ammonia other than it being an irritant,” said Kidd. “Unless you are getting real high dosages and it is replacing your oxygen and you can’t breathe. The amounts in the building were just irritating. ”

Nearby Notre Dame and Hunting Hills High Schools were placed on alert but there was no evacuation.

The centre was scheduled to re-open at 5:30 a.m. today.


Just Posted

Last-minute entry: Jason Kenney will be part of Wednesday’s Westerner Days parade

Premier Jason Kenney is a late addition to Wednesday morning’s Westerner Days… Continue reading

Two men arrested on drug charges in Blackfalds

Blackfalds RCMP say they expect to lay more charges after two men… Continue reading

Edmonton-Red Deer-Calgary bullet train waiting for provincial blessing

A high-speed train project between Edmonton and Calgary, proposed in April 2018,… Continue reading

Home selling and building markets reflecting a tough economy, but hope in sight

Real estate sales and new home builds still lagging 2018

Former Sylvan Lake bank employee sentenced to three years in prison for $1M fraud

Red Deer woman was ordered to pay nearly $830,000 in restitution

VIDEO: Reports say Lashana Lynch is the new 007

Daniel Craig will reprise his role as Bond one last time

Hernandez, Gurriel lead Blue Jays to 10-4 win over Red Sox

Blue Jays 10 Red Sox 4 BOSTON — Teoscar Hernandez hit a… Continue reading

New head coach Nick Nurse preparing Canada for long FIBA World Cup run

TORONTO — Nick Nurse is going to prepare Canada’s men’s basketball team… Continue reading

Court of Appeal dismisses Paradise Shores arguments

A court will not hear arguments; sticks with appeal board’s ruling

Schitt’s Creek’ and its stars among Canadians with Emmy nominations

TORONTO — Eugene Levy thought the highlight of his Tuesday would be… Continue reading

Singh sees Quebec as ‘fertile ground’ for NDP as he hits province for tour

OTTAWA — The province of Quebec offers the federal New Democrats fertile… Continue reading

Airline confirms three dead after float plane crashes in Labrador lake

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — Four occupants of a downed float plane remained… Continue reading

New developments in text-messaging controversy involving Manitoba chief

WINNIPEG — The women’s council of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs says… Continue reading

N.S. minister holds off comment on wrongful conviction case due to past as Mountie

HALIFAX — Nova Scotia’s justice minister — a retired Mountie — says… Continue reading

Most Read