Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Lakeland girl, 7, dies after generator left inside home

The home and the generator that deputies say led to the death of a 7-year-old in Polk County.

Polk County Sheriff's Office

The home and the generator that deputies say led to the death of a 7-year-old in Polk County.

The Polk County Sheriff's Office is investigating the death of a 7-year-old girl who died as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning from a generator that was left operating inside the home.

The Sheriff's Office said deputies received a call about 11:45 a.m. Wednesday from the girl's mother, Shashunda Wilson, 41. She told a dispatcher she woke up dizzy inside her home, 5124 Dossey Road South in Lakeland.

She said her daughter, Terryn Wilson, was sleeping next to her and appeared to be dead.

Polk County Fire Rescue was sent to the home and took the mother to a local hospital to be treated for symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning. Wilson told deputies that the generator was running in the living room while she and her daughter slept in a bedroom with a fan on.

They lived in a duplex. Deputies determined that "there were very high and dangerous levels of carbon monoxide" in the adjoining home. No one was else was injured. An autopsy will be conducted.

"This is the first death our agency has worked related to Hurricane Irma," Polk Sheriff Grady Judd said in a statement. "Please, please follow safety instructions that we have stressed over and over so no other tragedies such as this one occur."

Gas-powered generators give off carbon monoxide, a deadly gas that is colorless and odorless, so there's no warning that someone is being poisoned. Operating a generator inside a home is akin to leaving the car running inside a enclosed garage.

Remember these tips for safely operating generators:

• Never use a generator in an enclosed area, whether it's a garage, a tent or even under a porch.

• It should always be operated outside, at least 20 feet or more from wherever people will be residing. The exhaust should also be pointed away for people.

• If possible, keep carbon monoxide detectors on hand to monitor for dangerous levels of the gas.

Lakeland girl, 7, dies after generator left inside home 09/13/17 [Last modified: Wednesday, September 13, 2017 5:54pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. 102-year-old Holocaust survivor reunites with newly discovered nephew

    World

    KFAR SABA, Israel — Eliahu Pietruszka shuffled his 102-year-old body through the lobby of his retirement home toward a stranger and collapsed into him in a teary embrace. Then he kissed both cheeks of his visitor and in a frail, squeaky voice began blurting out greetings in Russian, a language he hadn't spoken in …

    Eliahu Pietruszka, right, embraces nephew Alexandre Pietruszka as they meet for the first time in Kfar Saba, Israel.
  2. As clock ticks on tax bill, White House signals a compromise

    National

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump's budget director, Mick Mulvaney, said Sunday that the White House is willing to remove a contentious provision taking aim at the Affordable Care Act from the GOP tax overhaul plan if politically necessary, a move that would fundamentally reshape the effort in the Senate.

    Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said the “biggest mistake” in the Senate plan was including the individual mandate repeal.
  3. Hillsborough seeks payback for ethics complaint but history shows that could be pricey

    Local

    TAMPA — Hillsborough County commissioners recently decided to go after the pocketbooks of several residents who filed unsuccessful ethics complaints against one of their colleagues.

    Hillsborough County Commissioner Ken Hagan has successfully lobbied his fellow commissioners to petition the Florida Commission on Ethics to rule on whether the county should be reimbursed for legal expenses related to an unsuccessful ethics complaint against Hagan. DIRK SHADD   |   Times  
  4. Figures from FSU case enter latest allegation against Jameis Winston

    Bucs

    MIAMI GARDENS — The case of Jameis Winston and a female Uber driver in Arizona took more twists Sunday, with Winston getting some level of corroboration, and his unnamed accuser retaining a familiar, high-profile attorney.

    Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston gives words of encouragement to teammates during the first half. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]
  5. Many Christian conservatives are backing Alabama's Roy Moore

    Elections

    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Alabama's Christian conservatives see Roy Moore as their champion. He has battled federal judges and castigated liberals, big government, gun control, Muslims, homosexuality and anything else that doesn't fit the evangelical mold.