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Man exposed to carbon monoxide recalls waking up to police at his door

“Our crews had readings of over 300 parts per million in certain areas of the house. We were six times over what we’d normally look at as a dangerous atmosphere."
Posted at 2:22 PM, Jan 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-01 19:40:14-05

Harlan Lee woke up to the sound of police banging on his door off 11th and Babcock on Sunday morning.

“Then I heard finally at the door, 'bang, bang, bang' and I answered the door, and here was a police officer he said, 'well, there’s been an accident with carbon monoxide poisoning,'” said Lee.

Police told Lee that the next door residence to his adjoining unit had been exposed to high levels of carbon monoxide after a car was accidentally left running in the garage.

“Our crews had readings of over 300 parts per million in certain areas of the house,” said Josh Waldo, fire chief at the Bozeman Fire Department.

“We were six times over what we’d normally look at as a dangerous atmosphere.”

Lee was sent to the hospital after he reported having a slight headache and the Bozeman Fire Department found traces of carbon monoxide that leaked into his unit.

Lee says he’s unsure, but may have heard his neighbors car running late the night before.

“It was 20/20 hindsight I would say probably,” said Lee.

“We’ve got a trailer court over here, and I heard something and I thought it was a generator so I just ignored it and went back to bed. It was kind of irritating. So now when I think about it, I thought well maybe that was her car running.”

While Lee says he can’t know for sure that it was his neighbor’s car running he heard running that night, he says he will continue to to be extra careful with appliances that could pose a threat.

“You know even before this incident happened I check everything, or double check. Sometimes triple check,” said Lee.

“It might sound crazy but you never know.”