• Kyodo

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Eleven people became ill from carbon monoxide poisoning during a dinner on Saturday night at a hotel in Yamagata Prefecture, with one of them temporarily falling unconscious, police said Sunday.

Out of the 11 who apparently became intoxicated, 10 were hotel guests on a group tour from neighboring Miyagi Prefecture. A woman who was entertaining the men during the dinner at the banquet hall of Hotel Mankoen in the city of Tsuruoka also fell ill due to the noxious air in the room. The 11 received hospital treatment though none of them are in life-threatening conditions, they said.

Police believe that the gas came from a charcoal fire used for cooking seafood in front of the guests, and are investigating whether the hotel management may have neglected to ventilate the room suitably, they said.

A hotel employee said, “We let fresh air into the hall and kept the door open, so I cannot understand how this has happened.”

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