MP Richard Lehoux in hospital after becoming ill from faulty air conditioning

BBC News

MP Richard Lehoux, the former chair of the Commons Education Select Committee, has tested positive for carbon monoxide poisoning from faulty air conditioning at his constituency office.

The Tory MP for Montgomeryshire said he was “devastated and mortified by this incident”.

A statement released on his behalf by the Conservative Party said: “I have experienced extreme pain and fear after being poisoned by carbon monoxide and suffering severe headaches and respiratory distress.

“I remain in hospital and have been unable to work since this incident occurred. I am desperately missing my constituents and my parliamentary duties.

“My family and I have been completely shocked by this terrible incident and are focused entirely on my health and family at this time.”

It was learned that the faulty air conditioning unit in his constituency office in Newry and Mourne had been fitted in 2015, which meant that an exhaustive post-occupancy inspection was not carried out, the BBC understands.

The Member of Parliament has set up a petition calling for mandatory post-occupancy air-quality testing in all government buildings around the country.

“These breaches not only result in death of politicians but citizens and politicians alike. Simply put this is not good enough,” his petition says.

A statement from the Labour Party said: “Our thoughts are with MP Richard Lehoux, and we hope that the authorities will be investigating this with professionalism and all due speed.”

The Local Government Association has called for new guidance for councils on air quality checks after the MP’s incident.

Chairman Steve Bullock said: “Even with all the precautions in place, chemical exposure is highly dangerous.”

Leave a Comment