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Fresno Pacific University Chlorine Lawsuit on Its Way to Mediation

Tuesday, April, 21, 2020

Fresno Pacific University and its swimmers are headed to mediation to resolve the lawsuit against the school related to a chlorine-release incident that occurred in 2018.


Three of the school’s swim team members – Matheus Misquito, Dakota Loew-Garrelts, Mireya Ortega, all filed lawsuits against the school after chlorine leaked into the pool where they were practicing in January 2018. The leak resulted in 13 swimmers needing hospitalization after inhaling the chemical and suffering burn injuries. The Fresno Fire Department blamed a malfunction in the pool’s automatic chlorination system for the leak that resulted in excess chlorine spilling into the pool.


The university described the injuries as minor and medically cleared all three of the athletes, but the three involved in the lawsuit say they are still dealing with their injuries even though it has been a year since the event occurred.


The lawsuit claims the swimmers suffered severe pain and were unable to breathe. They say they are still unable to concentrate and suffer from anxiety and depression related to the event. They also could not stop coughing and suffered “a host of pulmonary related issues and pain,” after the chlorine release.


According to statements from the students who filed the claim, they were pressured back into the water by their coaches after the incident. They also state the school offered to cover their medical expenses related to the incident but has yet to provide any financial compensation. All three of the students’ medical bills have been sent to collections.


Both the school and Pentair Water Pool and Spa, Inc. are named in the suit. Additionally, several “Doe” defendants have been named, which the plaintiffs claim will be revealed during discovery. The suit includes multiple claims of liability and negligence.