2 children, 1 adult experience carbon monoxide poisoning aboard boat in Seattle

Three people were transported to a local hospital after experiencing carbon monoxide poisoning aboard a boat in a Seattle marina.

Seattle Fire responded Saturday afternoon to a report of passengers on a private boat near Smith Cove experiencing symptoms of CO poisoning. A unit with the U.S. Coast Guard helped bring the boat back to shore to have the passengers meet with SFD medics.

Two girls and a woman experienced minor symptoms of CO poisoning, according to a Seattle Fire Department spokesperson. All three were transported to a local hospital in stable condition.

The identity of the passengers have not been released, or a cause in the CO poisoning.  

The CDC says motors generate CO, a colorless and odorless gas. Often, larger boats will have the engine ventilation at the back of the vessel that when near for long periods of time, or when traveling at lower speeds or idling, the CO ventilation may pose as a health risk to passengers.

Symptoms of CO poisoning include dizziness, headaches, nausea, vomiting, and chest pain. The CDC says the best ways to prevent CO poisoning on boats includes:

  • Proper installation and maintainance of fule-burning engines and appliances
  • Education on signs and symptoms of CO poisoning
  • To never block exhaust outlets; doing so can cause CO buildup inside a boat cabin or cockpit
  • Dock, beach, or anchor at least 20 feet from the nearest boat with a running engine or generator

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