Nine people get CO poisoning after charcoal grill used to heat Wheeling home

Nine people, including a 2-month-old baby, were taken to hospitals for carbon monoxide poisoning Wednesday afternoon after they used a charcoal grill to heat their Wheeling home, authorities said.

Wheeling Fire Department personnel measured carbon monoxide levels of more than 400 parts per million in the home on the 0-100 block of East Jeffrey Avenue, according to a news release.

Sustained carbon monoxide concentrations in the 150 to 200 parts per million range are considered dangerous, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. The Environmental Protection Agency has defined the highest acceptable level of carbon monoxide in the air at 35 parts per million.

Fire department personnel arrived to the residence just before 1 p.m., responding to a report that someone had fainted. Of the nine ill patients, three were children. All were taken to area hospitals: five to Glenbrook Hospital in Glenview, two to Northwest Community Hospital in Arlington Heights and two to Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge.

They were listed in stable condition.

The department said its investigation found the house had no working carbon monoxide detectors.

In total, 16 firefighters and four ambulances responded to the scene. Officials say the ambulances were staffed with additional personnel due to the subzero temperatures Wednesday.

  A grill that was used to heat a Wheeling home Wednesday is suspected as the cause of elevated carbon monoxide levels that sent nine people to hospitals on Wednesday. Joe Lewnard/
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