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Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Kills One, Seriously Injures Other

You can't smell it or see it; making CO a silent killer. And now officials are investigating after Carbon Monoxide poisoning killed one man, and sent another to the hospital.
CUMBERLAND, Md. - You can't smell it or see it, making Carbon Monoxide a silent killer. And now officials are investigating after Carbon Monoxide poisoning killed one man, and sent another to the hospital.

Officials in Cumberland believe it's to blame for the death of Chester Porter Jr., 63, and also making Ronald Mowery, 67, very sick.

The men were painting inside a home on Boone Street when they were poisoned. They were using a kerosene heater and a gas generator, and didn't have any windows or doors open. 

"I think it's terrible. Those things happen, but still it's a sad thing. My heart goes out to anybody that you know," said Erma Stover, a woman who lives on Boone Street.

In a statement released to us Wednesday, officials said they found extremely high levels of Carbon Monoxide in the residence where the two men were found.

Fire officials said there are things homeowners can do to prevent this from happening in your home.

"To have their heating equipment checked, their flues, make sure their unblocked, make sure everything's working correctly. They can have a carbon monoxide detector. A lot of people have smoke detectors, these are different, they detect the gas," said Ken McKenzie of the Cumberland Fire Department.

And if you think you might have carbon monoxide poisoning, there are a few tell-tale signs.

"If you get to the point where you're having color-changes in your skin, and vomiting, and stuff, that's late in the exposure. And the next step is of course, unconsciousness and death," said McKenzie.

Some early symptoms can sometimes be confused with common cold or flu symptoms, so fire officials say, if you have a concern, it's always better to get things checked out, and be safe, rather than sorry.

And officials also said you should never bring machines, like things with motors that run on gas, indoors. The fumes from machines or generators need proper ventilation, and will emit too much Carbon Monoxide if left inside.
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