Carbon monoxide plays role in July drowning accident

Published: Aug. 9, 2013 at 9:30 PM CDT|Updated: Dec. 15, 2014 at 3:20 AM CST
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Lindsey Culver, 27
Lindsey Culver, 27

PALO PINTO COUNTY, TX (KCBD) - Last month, 27-year-old Lindsey Culver of Lubbock tragically drowned at Possum Kingdom Lake.

But a recent toxicology report shows that there is more to the story.

Examiners found a 44% concentration of carbon monoxide in Culver's blood, raising a lot of questions about how easy it is to breathe in the poison.

It's odorless, tasteless and can knock you completely unconscious. So when you're on the water, it's a deadly recipe.

According to Robert Box, Chief Lake Ranger at Possum Kingdom Lake, a boat's engine can produce enormous amounts carbon monoxide.

He said the boat's design and size determine how much.

"Boats with the captain call, the exhauster is out on the side," Box said.

Box also said he's seeing a larger number of big boats on the lake, and bigger boats produce more fumes. "The bigger the boat the more equipment you have to have generators aboard," he said.

Even slow-moving pontoon boats can be lethal. Pontoons, or party boats are known for cruising. Box says since boats don't catch a lot of wind, carbon monoxide can hang around and grow stagnate under the boat.

He says for people remain aware at how often the engine is running. If you are stalling in the water, he says to cut the engine.


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