NORTH ADAMS -- The Fire Department suspects a propane-powered cement cutter is to blame for a carbon monoxide leak that closed the Big Y Supermarket last week and sent two people to the hospital.
At 7:35 a.m., on Oct. 2, a Big Y carbon monoxide detector went off, bringing the North Adams Fire Department to the scene within minutes.
The carbon monoxide in the store was measured at a level of about 180 parts per million, according to Fire Director Stephen Meranti. Fire Department meters begin to sound an alarm when carbon monoxide levels exceed 35 parts per million.
"We're pretty confident it was that concrete saw," Meranti said.
Two people were transported to the hospital. Information on their condition was not immediately available.
The fire department set up fans and opened the doors of the store to circulate fresh air into the building. Shortly after 11 a.m., Meranti said, the store was allowed to reopen.
Meranti said nearby stores, including CVS and Advanced Auto Parts also showed high readings of carbon monoxide and had to be ventilated.
The fire department returned to the store later in the day, Meranti said, and carbon monoxide levels were normal.
A Big Y employee declined to comment on the incident.
-- Adam Shanks