Officials warn of carbon monoxide poisoning as cool temperatures settle in

Officials warn of carbon monoxide poisoning as cool temperatures settle in

LAKE CITY, SC (WMBF) - Portable generators, space heaters and wood stoves are useful during the winter, but improper use can have deadly results. This hits our area hard, as two people recently died because of carbon monoxide poisoning.

"Man it was real hurtful…you know…it shocked me really," Nicholas Lawson, who knew both victims said.

Lawson knew both 62-year-old Jimmy Lee Burgess and 56-year-old William James Hickson.

The two were roommates at a home on Franklin Street. "They were real good people," Lawson said.

The Florence County Coroner said both men fell victim to carbon monoxide poisoning, after a generator was found in the home powering a small space heater.

The coroner said both men died overnight on Sunday and one of the victim's sister found the two sometime Monday.

Lawson said while he's mourning the loss of his friends there is a take away message from this incident.

"Don't have any generator or nothing like that inside of your house because it will kill you," Lawson said.

"Generators should never be used inside of a residence," Fire Chief Randy Driggers of the Lake City Fire Department said.

Chief Driggers said generators should be only used several feet from all structures because of the deadly gas carbon monoxide, which is emitted by the device.

"A small generator can actually produce more carbon monoxide than one-hundred cars running at one time," Driggers said.

For previous coverage on the carbon monoxide deaths, tap here. 

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