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2 dead, 12 hospitalized after carbon monoxide poisoning in New Jersey

PASSAIC, N.J. -- Carbon monoxide killed two people in a recording studio at a converted factory building and sickened a dozen others, authorities said Saturday.

Passaic Mayor Alex Blanco said at a news conference that police responded to a 911 call at about 1:30 p.m. and found the two dead on the second floor of the three-story building.

The other 12 victims "experienced confusion and were choking" as they tried to leave the mixed-use commercial building, he said. They were being treated at local hospitals, CBS New York reported.

"This is a sad day for the city of Passaic," the mayor of the blue-collar city about 15 miles west of New York said.

A city spokesman said hazmat teams, fire departments, ambulances and a gas company were on the scene and responders from neighboring towns helped bring victims to three hospitals.

"I want to thank the police department, fire, EMS and prosecutors for their fast search and rescue mission that was done," Blanco said. "If it wasn't for their quickness, there'd be more fatalities."

Fire Chief Patrick Trentacost said the building's sprinkler system was intact, as was the fire alarm system.

The county prosecutor's office was investigating the cause of the incident.