ELLICOTT CITY, Md. (WJZ/HOWARD COUNTY POLICE/AP) — An Ellicott City man died overnight and his wife and teenage son are in critical condition in what appears to be a case of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Won Koo Sung, 48, was pronounced dead by fire and rescue personnel at his residence in the 2700-block of Old Saint John’s Lane. His wife, Young Sin Sung, 47, and his son, Jason Sung, 17, were transported to Shock Trauma in critical condition.
According to the Sungs’ 19-year-old-daughter, who had been staying with a friend, the family’s home lost power early Sunday morning during Hurricane Irene. She reported to police that she last spoke with her mother late Sunday afternoon.
After trying unsuccessfully to reach her family on Monday, the daughter went to the house around 10:45 p.m. She found her mother unconscious and called 911.
Investigators discovered a generator in the attached garage in the single family home with a knob in the “on” position and the gas tank empty. There was a carbon monoxide alarm found inside the home with dead batteries.
Fire personnel reported a high reading on their carbon monoxide detector, which is used to determine the level of carbon monoxide in the air.
Police do not suspect foul play.
In Prince George’s County, two women and two men were hospitalized Monday night for carbon monoxide exposure. Officials say an occupant of the Fort Washington home told a 911 dispatcher that a gas-powered generator was operating in an attached garage with the door closed.
Officials want to remind residents of the following safety tips:
• Generators, grills, camp stoves or other gasoline, propane, natural gas or charcoal-burning devices should never be used inside a home, basement, garage or camper—or even outside near an open window.
• Every home should have at least one working carbon monoxide detector. The detector’s batteries should be checked at least twice annually, at the same time smoke detector batteries are checked.