Woman killed in home by carbon monoxide

November 8, 2010 3:49:51 PM PST
Police say a woman died and her husband was hospitalized Sunday afternoon after an accident involving a SUV parked in a garage.

Monday, the Raleigh Police department identified the woman as 64-year-old Sarah Fernside Tanner and her husband James Mahan Tanner Jr., also 64.

Police department spokesperson Jim Sughrue said it appears the SUV was left running, and the engine produced enough carbon monoxide to fill the home on Askew Lane near Oberlin Road.

Sughrue said contrary to previous reports, it does not appear that someone accidentally pushed the remote start button for the SUV - the vehicle was just accidently left running.

No foul play is suspected.

"We're all really feeling for the families and friends of the victim tonight," said Jeff Hammerstein with Wake County EMS who spoke with ABC11 Sunday evening. "What a tragic day they faced,"

Raleigh police haven't said if the couple had a working carbon monoxide detector. Hammerstein said they are critical for homeowners.

"I think as a society, we've gotten more and more used to the idea that smoke detectors are there and very important and that we should get those and maintain those," he explained.

But, Hammerstein says carbon monoxide can go undetected.

"You can't see it. It can be there and be a threat to you and you not ever really even know that it's there, which is one of the things that makes it so dangerous," he offered.

Officials say James Tanner was being treated at Duke Hospital and he is in critical condition.

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