Crim Gas Leak

A Crim school official holds a radio as Bowling Green police and firefighters look on this morning.

The Bowling Green Fire Division was called to Crim Elementary Wednesday morning — not for a gas leak as first feared, but for a malfunctioning HVAC unit.

Terry Busch, captain with the department, said crews were dispatched at 10:31 a.m. for a smell of natural gas in a classroom.

Busch said the school was not evacuated, and it wasn’t a widespread alert, but was contained to one room.

Students, however, were out of the school around 10:15 a.m. for a planned fire drill.

The drill was announced at the beginning of the year and just happened on the same day the fire department was called, said Crim Principal Zeb Kellough.

After talking with school maintenance at the scene, firefighters learned it was an ongoing problem with a rooftop HVAC unit, Busch said.

“They shut that down and will be looking into repairs,” he said.

Kellough said parts for the unit were available, and fixes should be made Wednesday.

Fire crews vented the room by opening a window. They walked through the adjoining rooms and found nothing.

Busch blamed an HVAC unit on the roof.

“It had issues firing up properly,” Busch said about the unit.

Kellough explained when the unit fails to start properly, it shuts down and releases natural gas. That gas blew downwind and was drawn into an air unit.

Fire personnel cleared the scene at 10:58 a.m.

(This story has been updated with fire drill details.)

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