Legislator Barred From Bringing Oxygen Tank to House Chamber

Apr 11, 2016

 

Credit Allegra Boverman for NHPR

An 80-year-old New Hampshire legislator with a lung problem has been told not to bring his portable oxygen concentrator with him to the Statehouse.

The Valley News reports Rep. Ernie Bridge, a Republican from Unity, says he's required to be on a concentrator 24 hours a day after suffering a small "leak" in his lung in January.

Bridge says the House's sergeant-at-arms told him that the tank couldn't accompany him to his assigned seat because it could block the emergency route for other legislators.

Jim Rivers, a spokesman for Speaker Shawn Jasper, says Jasper makes every attempt to accommodate members with health issues.

Bridge says it's unlikely that he'll attend House sessions in Concord until he knows he'll be able to vote.