Suspected Gas Attack At 'Furry' Convention Puts 19 In Hospital

Suspected Gas Attack At

A suspected "intentional" chlorine gas leak at a hotel in Chicago - the venue for Midwest Fufest, a convention for "furries" - has left 19 guests in hospital.

The Chicago Tribune reports that at around 12:40am this morning, emergency services responded to reports of a "noxious odor" at the hotel, which was leaving attendees complaining of "nausea, dizziness and other medical problems".

Because the attack took place in the middle of the night, many attendees were still partying, and were forced to shelter outside still "dressed up as animal characters".

Police currently investigating the incident say that the way in which the powdered chlorine was released "suggests an intentional act".

Below is a statement from the con's organisers:

At around 12:45 AM on Sunday, December 7, the Hyatt Regency O'Hare received a complaint of a chemical odor on the ninth floor. Following a 9-1-1 call, first responders determined that a container with a chlorine-containing chemical was broken there. At 1:10 AM the entire hotel was evacuated, first across Bryn Mawr Ave. in front of the Hyatt as per Rosemont Fire Department's standard procedures, then when it became apparent that the wait would take longer the Stephens Convention Center was opened to provide warmth and shelter to our guests. A full HazMat response was called in at that time.

In the course of investigating the scene, the Rosemont Police Department determined that this was a criminal act and began investigating it as such. This delayed allowing our guests back into the hotel. Midwest FurFest is deeply thankful for the cooperation and patience shown during this time, and please know that everyone was working to get you back into the hotel as quickly as possible. At 4:21 AM the all-clear was given and we worked with the Hyatt staff to return all of our guests to the hotel in the quickest and safest manner possible.

Rosemont Public Safety has reported that nineteen people who complained of nausea and dizziness were transported to local hospitals. Because they were transported after the hotel (including Hyatt staff) was evacuated, we do not have any identification of these individuals. We have been informed by the Hyatt Regency O'Hare that some of those individuals have been released as of this morning.

As we wake up today we want to continue to provide the best possible convention that we can, despite the trying circumstances. The convention will be running on a full normal programming schedule today. We ask you to continue to be patient, and remember that the volunteers who make Midwest FurFest happen intend to give 110% to make sure that the fun, friendship, and good times of Midwest FurFest 2014 overshadow last night's unfortunate incident.

To dispel rumours: Because this was an unforeseen possibly criminal act, Midwest FurFest will not be offering refunds, nor will the Hyatt Regency O'Hare be comping any rooms. Any further questions should be referred to [email protected]

19 hospitalized, thousands evacuated in 'intentional' gas leak at Rosemont hotel [Chicago Tribune]


Comments

    I know furries are popular to make fun of on the internet, but this is disgusting. Just because they're weird doesn't mean they deserve to die.

      Just because you consider them weird doesn't make them weird. Why can't people just see something they don't like/enjoy/agree with and keep moving on without comment, protest or harassment?

      Jesus...

        what a massive hypocrite!

        "keep moving on without comment, protest, or harrassment?"errm, your name is "U r idiotia" - just because you consider OP an 'idiotia' (sic) doesn't make it so - pot....kettle....black. You should consider taking your own advice.

        Last edited 09/12/14 1:18 pm

        "Just because you consider them weird doesn't make them weird."

        Actually, it does, by definition. Read the relevant dictionary definition of 'weird', it involves 'strange' and 'extraordinary'. Now look up those words, you'll find that the definition of weird is definitionally an assessment of an individual's reactions.

        Hippies are lovely, but their claims aren't reliable.

    I'm sure one of them just dropped their guts is all.

    I'm sure they will be up licking their nuts in no time.

    Someone decided to pay too much attention to detail on their skunk costume it seems.

    Not vidya!
    Ahem.

    Furries, huh? What a crazy bunch.
    Crazier still is someone who'd go out to hurt a bunch of people, though,

    Who the crap attacks a crowd of people with chlorine gas? What is this WW1 Germany?

      It makes a twisted, logical sense. Of all the attack vectors people (especially authorities) are paranoid about these days, Chlorine Gas is not one of them.

        And all it takes is a trip to a pool supply or hardware store.

    Impressed by the empathy of the comments, Kotaku you have pleasantly surprised me.

    I too can empathise by the way, accidentally inhaled chlorine fumes in a work accident, t'was a miserable experience.

      On this side of Kotaku, yes. The American side is... questionable, though.

    i wonder how many people wouldnt recognise this as an act of terrorism.

      Probably those who do not know how dangerous chlorine gas is.

        4600 attendees.
        16 hospitalized.
        Zero fatalities.
        Go on, wax lyrical about the intense danger...

          I was talking about chlorine gas in general. I'm also thankful there were no fatalities.

          tell that to the western front in WWI

          a failed attack due to luck or incompetence is just that.

          its disturbing to think this could happen to anyone anywhere on any day, not just furries.

            Sure, let's talk about how effective chlorine gas was in WW1.
            There were 16 million combatant deaths in WW1, 91 thousand from chlorine gas, so 0.56% percent.

            In perspective: In WW1 where chlorine saw widespread use as a weapon which is ideally suited to use against trenches, it killed at a rate lower than the existing US automobile accident rate (also lower than the US homicide rate, and lower than the US suicide rate).

            I love furries, I love that they are friendly humans involved in a fun passtime, and I truly wish them well. But my point is quite simple: Anyone who looks at this attack and is terrified by it, is probably also terrified by Spongebob.

              In WWI the effectiveness of Chlorine gas was reduced by the use of gas masks. People weren't just standing around taking deep breaths and not being affected by it - they were in a war zone.

              People attending conventions or using public transport aren't in a war zone and don't carry gas masks. Or shouldn't have to, anyway. But thats where terrorism takes people, I guess.

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