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AMBULANCE TECH WITH CO DETECTOR FINDS LEAK AT LONG ISLAND DUNKIN' DONUTS

By: 
Kristin Thorne
Publication: 
EyeWitness News ABC 7
Jun
2
2014

CARLE PLACE (WABC) -- A Dunkin' Donuts customer looking for a morning cup of coffee on Long Island was in the right place at the right time with the right equipment.

An ambulance technician wearing a carbon monoxide detector walked into the restaurant on Glen Cove Road in Carle Place around 4 a.m. Friday, and his alarm went off.

He cleared everyone out of the building, and inspectors found high levels of the odorless and colorless gas coming from an oven vent.

A manager died and 19 people were overcome back in February by a carbon monoxide leak at a restaurant in Huntington.

A noise signaled to the technician, Joseph Blundo, that something just wasn't right inside the Dunkin' Donuts.

"I asked the worker there how he was feeling, if he had any headaches, any symptoms of carbon monoxide, he says no," said Blundo.

He thought maybe something was wrong with his meter. He went outside, cleared it but when he went back in it went off again.

"I told him my meter was going off and asked him if we could go into back to where the oven was and the meter shot up to 80 parts per million," said Blundo.

He got the worker out of the store and called the dispatcher.

"It's a good feeling to know I did save someone's life," said Blundo, who says he bought the $200 tiny piece of equipment just recently.

He purchased it after the death of the manager of the Legal Sea Foods in Huntington Station who was overcome with CO2.

Several police officers were also sickened by the deadly gas.

Suffolk County legislator William Spencer has passed a bill that is looking at whether all county police officers and EMT's should be required to wear one of these devices.

"One of the things that we don't want to have happen is our first responders are often the first on scene and we don't want them becoming victims," said Spencer.

Nassau has already passed a law that will require carbon monoxide detectors in all public and commercial buildings, preventing what could have been a disaster here.

Customers say it's a good thing.

"I'm a home builder and the regulations are very strident what we have to provide in our single family and multi family homes so I think it's important for commercial businesses to have it," said Alec Ornstein of Huntington.