Pump malfunction at Water Park sent 25 to hospital

WHITE LAKE — A pump malfunction at White Lake Water Park released a small amount of concentrated chlorine in a pool on Thursday afternoon, according to Bladen County Emergency Services Director Bradley Kinlaw.

According to the White Lake Water Park’s Facebook page, the incident occurred at 3:20 p.m. at the wave pool.

“This afternoon (Thursday), around 3:20 p.m., we had an incident at our new wave pool where a higher than normal amount of pool bleach sanitizer was introduced into the pool by accident,” the facebook entry explained. “There were many people in the pool at the time of the incident. A local school had around 25 children in the pool, most of which were in the shallow end of the pool.”

The Facebook page added that the bleach entered the pool through return inlets located at the various points in the pool floor. The bleach that leaked into the deeper end of the pool was diluted by the water, but in the shallow end the bleach odor was able to reach the surface where many children were playing, according to the Facebook page.

“It is our understanding that, of the 25 children checked out at the local hospital, three received breathing treatments and all were sent home. We are deeply sorry such an incident ever occurred and we have already taken steps to insure an incident like this can never occur again,” reads the Facebook page.

Kinlaw said that about 25 children were transported either by ambulance or private vehicles to Bladen County Hospital for treatment of symptoms including nausea and vomiting.

Several public safety agencies, including public health officials, were on the scene, according to Kinlaw.

Erin Smith can be reached at 910-862-4163.