Brothers die from carbon monoxide poisoning



Posted on February 24, 2014 at 3:00 PM

Updated Monday, Feb 24 at 9:17 PM

CHEHALIS, Wash. -- Twin 80-year-old brothers were apparently overcome by carbon monoxide while working on an antique car in a closed garage in Chehalis and died.
The men were identified as Bill and Walt Schofield.
The Lewis County sheriff's office says the wife of one of the men found them Sunday evening when she returned home from a neighbor's house.

Dean Wigstrom, a close friend, saw Bill driving this car Sunday.

Hours later, bill's wife found the 80-year-old twin brothers passed out in the garage.

“Apparently she went out to get them to come and eat and they were on the floor,” said Wigstrom.

Both were taken to the hospital, where they died.

According to the Lewis County Sheriff's Office, a high level of carbon monoxide was detected in the garage.

Emergency responders believe the brothers were working on an antique car with the engine on and the garage door closed.

Members of their Centralia car club are shocked.

“It’s just something you don't realize,” said Gary Viggers. “It’s cold so you think you let it run for a while and it’s not going to bother you. Once it overtakes you, you don't realize it.”

Viggers says several years ago the same thing happened to another friend.

“I hope it wakes up older guys like us that are working on cars,” he said.

The wife that found the two men in the garage is overwhelmed with grief and has been hospitalized with heart problems.

Lewis County Sheriff Steve Mansfield advised people to educate themselves about the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Carbon monoxide has no odor, color or taste. It diminishes your ability to absorb oxygen. Symptoms are often mistaken for something else. When carbon monoxide problems develop slowly, they can be mistaken for the flu.

If there's a leak, there's reason to worry. Sources could include unvented gas space heaters, leaking furnaces or automobile exhaust in garages.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission suggests a carbon monoxide alarm near every area of your home that is used for sleeping