Carbon monoxide poisoning is emerging as the most likely cause of death of an 11-year-old boy and two elderly guests in the motel room almost two months apart in Boone NC.
Boone police said emergency responders found elevated levels of the gas in the Best Western room where Jeffrey Lee Williams of Rock Hill, South Carolina, died on Saturday.
Police say a preliminary post mortem found the boy died from asphyxia, which happens when toxic gases cut off oxygen to the body.
Jeffrey’s 49-year-old mother, Jeannie Williams, was rushed to hospital and survived. She is in a stable condition.
A Longview, Washington, couple was found dead in the same motel room on April 16.
Police said new toxicology results show 73-year-old Daryl Dean Jenkins and 72-year-old Shirley Mae Jenkins also died of carbon monoxide poisoning.
The hotel on East King Street in Boone remains closed while investigators focus on the heating system for the pool.
The room where all three people died is above the pool. The pool permit was suspended on March 16 after inspectors noted ventilation problems in the chemical and equipment room. The pool had since reopened, but it could not confirm the problems had been fixed.
Duty to Protect from Carbon Monoxide Poisoning — Business and Home Owners
Unfortunately not every hotel or apartment is equipped with functional CO monitors — which means that unwary occupants are potentially exposed to this silent killer. Hotel guests and tenants of apartments should not be required to wear personal monitors for these type of preventable exposures. All owners of property, even home owners, should conduct annual inspections of their gas furnaces and hot water heaters that are fueled by natural gas, liquid propane gas or heating oil. A certified heating and ventilation inspector should ensure that the furnace and water heaters are in good working order and properly vented. Clogged chimneys and vent pipes often cause a backup of CO gas that eventually escapes to other areas of a dwelling.
What is Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?
Often called “the silent killer,” Carbon monoxide is an invisible and odorless gas that is produced when burning any fuel, such as gasoline, propane, natural gas, oil, wood, and charcoal. Carbon monoxide causes illness by decreasing the amount of oxygen present in a person’s body.
CO poisoning can often be mistaken for other illnesses, such as the flu. The most common symptoms include headache, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, and confusion. In severe cases, the person may lose consciousness or die. Often, other people in the place of business or household will exhibit similar symptoms.
In addition to death, carbon monoxide can cause severe learning disability, memory loss, and personality changes.
West Virginia Carbon Monoxide Wrongful Death Attorneys
Hotel owners and landlords have the highest degree of responsibility to ensure that their facilities are safe for guests and tenants. Inspections and proper maintenance of equipment and heating units and the installation and maintenance of detectors are common-sense preventative measures one would expect any building owner to have in place to prevent these senseless tragedies.
Robinette Legal Group has represented CO injury victims and the families of individuals who have died from CO exposure. Jeff Robinette is a National Board Certified Trial Lawyer and has the experience to handle your carbon monoxide exposure case. If you or a loved one has experienced the devastating effects of carbon monoxide poisoning , please contact us at the Robinette Legal Group, PLLC for help at http://www.robinettelaw.com or (304)594-1800.