5 people treated for carbon monoxide poisoning

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By Jennifer StaggWEST VALLEY CITY -- A West Valley City family was taken to the hospital Tuesday morning with apparent carbon monoxide poisoning.

Every year more than 500 Americans die, more than 20,000 visit the emergency room and more than 4,000 are hospitalized due to CO poisoning. -CDC

Crews responded to a home near 3200 West and 4000 South around 6:30 a.m. after a child woke up complaining about a stomach ache. Other family members also reported feeling sick.

Lee Moukdahan, 24, woke up around 6 a.m. to use the restroom but had a terrible headache and immediately collapsed.

She said she woke up again, tried to walk into the family room, but passed out again. "I ended up collapsing again on the living room floor, and I was just so tired," she said. "My head was spinning, and I felt really sick."

Her 1-year-old daughter and siblings had similar symptoms, and her mother and father had the presence of mind to evacuate the house and call 911.

**Carbon Monoxide poisoning**
Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, colorless gas found in combustion fumes produced by cars and trucks, small gasoline engines, stoves, lanterns, burning charcoal and wood, and gas ranges and heating systems. Common symptoms of CO poisoning are: - headache - dizziness - weakness - nausea - vomiting - chest pain - confusion High levels of CO inhalation can cause loss of consciousness and death. People who are asleep or intoxicated can die from CO poisoning before ever experiencing symptoms. - *CDC*
Joe White, with the West Valley City Fire Department, said, "Most of them were complaining of being nauseous and a headache. One individual was having a hard time walking."

The family of six was transported to Intermountain Medical Center, where all but Lee's father were treated in the hyperbaric chamber to remove all of the carbon monoxide from their system.

Questar investigated the CO leak and determined it came from the combination of the lit fireplace, the running furnace and little air ventilation in the home.

White said, "Those CO monitors are just as important as our smoke detectors."

Lee said her family doesn't have a carbon monoxide detector, but they will by the end of the day.

E-mail: jstagg@ksl.com

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