Two more APD officers sent to hospital from carbon monoxide leaks

FILE - Austin police vehicle (KXAN File Photo)
FILE - Austin police vehicle (KXAN File Photo)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Two more Austin police officers were sent to the hospital Wednesday night, after becoming ill from carbon monoxide in their patrol vehicles.

The conditions of the two officers have not been released, or additional details on what happened in the most recent case that has plagued the Austin Police Department. Last week, six officers reported carbon monoxide leaks in their Ford Explorers and were treated and released.

The Austin Police Association has asked for more sensitive detectors for officers to use. They claim current detectors sound the alarm only after officers become ill.

The union wants modified exhaust systems on vehicles to keep fumes from entering inside patrol cars. They also want an APA representative to work with the team tackling the issue.

Last week, the union told officers to drive with windows down in those Ford Explorers in the fleet, which number at 397. The department is considering replacing the vehicles as a temporary solution.

Explorers make up more than 60 percent of the APD fleet. Currently, 40 of the Explorers are out of service because of CO concerns.

The department has enough vehicles to swap out the Ford Explorers with unmarked pursuit-ready sedans. APD says the department experienced its first exposure to carbon monoxide back in March.

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