At just 13 years old, little Erin woke up feeling terrible – the worst she had felt in her life. She was sick, dizzy, and groggy, but was not alarmed at first. It wasn’t until she was attempting to go up her stairs that she could no longer stay conscious. Erin collapsed, and that was when her parents realized something was really wrong. She was rushed to the hospital to be treated. The cause of her sickness was unexpected, and it could happen to anyone. This is what her parents want you to know.
Erin had carbon monoxide poisoning. After an investigation, it was found that her father had accidentally left the car running in the garage…all night. He returned home the evening before, and pressed the START | STOP button, but not hard enough. The engine normally runs very quietly, so he did not notice when the car didn’t shut off.
The fumes from the garage slowly seemed into the vents that led to Erin’s bedroom, just above the garage. The gas was colorless and odorless, and many people die from this same issue every year.
If your car has a keyless start, pay attention when you go to shut it off. The car may remain running for an indefinite amount of time. Manufacturers are looking into ways to stop this from happening in the future, but for now, the best way to prevent illness and potential death is to make sure you car is off before you walk away.
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