Carbon Monoxide kills two in Mt. Shasta Vista subdivision

Courtesy of MGN Online

Two adults died from carbon monoxide poisoning in the Mt. Shasta Vista subdivision in northern California on Saturday, February 9th, according to a report released by the Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office.

On Thursday, the sheriff's office identified the two victims as Cha Lao, 50, and Lia Her, 43, both of Sacramento, California. Their deaths have been ruled an accident.

According to Sheriff Jon Lopey, “We are saddened by the death of the victims involved in this case. Our thoughts, prayers, and condolences go out to both victims, their families, and friends.”

The SCSO responded to the report in the vicinity of Carnes Road, an unincorporated area about 35 miles southeast of Yreka. According to Lopey, the structure appeared to have been built without county permits and without required amenities, such as indoor plumbing and other features.

The source of the carbon monoxide is suspected to be from charcoal burning in a barbecue-type device that Lao and Her appeared to be using to warm the structure. Charcoal emits a high level of CO, especially in an enclosed structure, which can be extremely dangerous.

Carbon monoxide poisoning can strike without warning and can kill or injure people and pets. CO claims the lives of hundreds of people every year and makes thousands more ill in our nation. Many household items can create deadly CO fumes, including gas and oil-burning furnaces, portable generators, charcoal grills, lanterns, unvented or subserviced wood burning stoves, and similar heating devices. The following tips can help prevent the needless injuries and deaths caused by CO in our communities:

  • Ensure your heating system, water heater, and any other gas, oil, or coal burning appliances are serviced by a qualified technician once a year.
  • It is highly recommended that battery-operated or battery back-up CO detectors be installed in your home and check or replace the battery when you change your clocks each spring and fall.
  • If the CO detector sounds, leave your home immediately and call 9-1-1.
  • Seek medical attention if you suspect CO poisoning. Symptoms include a dizzy, light-headed, and/or a nauseated feeling.
  • Never use a generator, charcoal grill, camp stove, or other gasoline or charcoal-burning device inside your home, basement, and garage or near a window of any structure you occupy.
  • Don’t run a car or truck inside a garage attached to your house, even if you leave the garage door open.
  • Don’t burn anything in a stove or fireplace that isn’t vented.
  • Don’t heat your house with a gas oven.
  • If you use a generator near your home, ensure it is located at least 20 feet away from your home, doors, and windows.
  • Carbon monoxide can’t be seen, can’t be smelled, can’t be heard, BUT CAN BE STOPPED by following some of the suggestions mentioned in this news release.”

Questions about the dangers associated with CO should be referred to your local law enforcement agency or fire department.

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