by Ray Pauley
Public Information Officer
Grand Island Fire Co.
At 9:12 a.m. on Sunday, Nov. 16, Grand Island Fire Co. rescue personnel responded to a report of carbon monoxide exposure involving a Countryside Lane family.
Deputy Fire Chief Chris Soluri stated that 31-year-old Mckenzie Hassan had earlier found her 6-year-old son unconscious in his bedroom and immediately contacted the GIFC for emergency assistance. At the instruction of a GIFC dispatcher, her son and an 11-day-old infant were removed from a contaminated environment while responders began to arrive on location. Assistant Fire Chief Mark Sadkowski and Omar Sortino then determined that dangerous, life-threatening levels of CO had reached 460 parts per million. It was noted that prolonged exposure to such elevated levels of CO could very well have resulted in more serious consequences, such as tragic fatalities.
The exact cause of this CO buildup has not yet been determined by National Fuel representatives, who were also called to the scene.
The mother and two sons received oxygen therapy from GIFC medics and were transported to Women and Children's Hospital for further medical attention. The father, 33-year-old Angelo Pascucci, had refused treatment but accompanied family members to the hospital.
Soluri stated that although a CO detector was present in the home, it was not functioning at the time. He urged all homeowners to check smoke and CO detectors for proper operating condition and replace any unit if necessary. He added a $20 or $30 investment is a small price to pay to ensure a life-saving advantage during any such emergency.
All GIFC units returned to service by 10:38 a.m., after the structure was thoroughly ventilated.