First responders found four people and a dog dead of apparent carbon monoxide poisoning inside their homes at a Wilmington, Delaware, apartment complex, police tell NBC10.
High levels of carbon monoxide were detected at the Hidden Valley Apartment Complex located at 500 Homestead Road around 5 p.m. Friday. The building was evacuated and firefighters searched the complex.
New Castle County Police Cpl. Tom Jackson said officers were called to the building after family members couldn't get hold of their loved ones over the phone during the day.
When officers arrived, they discovered three people and a dog deceased in one apartment and another person in a different unit, Jackson said.
The complex was evacuated and seven people, four adults and three kids, were taken to a nearby hospital for treatment, according to police.
About two dozen apartments remain evacuated as the investigation continues.
Officials do not believe foul play is involved. The cause of the carbon monoxide buildup was not yet known.
Carbon monoxide is a colorless and odorless gas that is produced by combustible engines in vehicles, gas generators and other heating elements. Poisoning symptoms are described as flu-like with dizziness, nausea and chest pain. People who are drunk or sleeping are especially susceptible to death from the gas.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says more than 4,000 people are hospitalized every year from CO poisoning. More than 400 people die. Here's some tips to avoid CO poisoning in your home.