Aberdeen, SD – A carbon monoxide incident caused Tapz, Bully’s Chop House and the kitchen at the Ramada Inn to be evacuated Friday night. Aberdeen Fire and Rescue responded to the call at 6:31 p.m., Battalion Chief Randy Meister said.
“The hot water heater in the basement was malfunctioning, and that is what caused the carbon monoxide,” Meister said.
The pool area, convention rooms, and hotel rooms were not evacuated or affected, said Meister.
“We had to evacuate the kitchen, restaurants and bars,” said Rob Mattern, food and beverage manager for the Ramada. “Most of the customers left and the staff moved to the pool area, where it was safe.”
Nobody was injured in the incident, Meister said, but one employee was checked out by crew members on an ambulance, but refused service.
The water heater was down in the basement, Meister said, which made it difficult to get the carbon monoxide out.
“We have to use fans to get fresh air down there to remove the carbon monoxide,” he said. “It’s time just takes time, especially in the basement, to get fresh air down there.”
Meister said maintenance was on the scene along with a company that was going to take care of the hot water heater.
The restaurants and bars were back open for business and the scene was cleared by 7:52 p.m., Meister said.
“The fire department wanted to make sure everything was safe,” Mattern said.
The issue started in the boiler room, he said.
Erika Crouch, assistant food and beverage manager at the Ramada Inn, said she had never had a carbon monoxide problem at the Ramada for the past five and half or six years she has worked there.
“We just wanted to make sure everyone got out safely,” she said.
Mattern said Friday night that the Ramada already has a contractor lined up to fix the boiler.