Canton Township firefighters entered home even after 911 call warned of carbon monoxide

Firefighters rescue man from basement

CANTON TOWNSHIP, Mich. – It was at the very least a frightening situation last week in Canton Township

Something was happening inside a home in the 46000 block of Mornington Road but it wasn't clear exactly what. The call to 911 helped a little. A man called saying his colleague was unconscious. He was too weak to help him upstairs. 

911 dispatch: "Is he breathing?"
Caller: "He's breathing."
911 dispatch: "OK, stay on the phone with me. I'm going to go ahead and send ... "
Caller: "But I can't wake him up."

The men were contractors working in the house with a gas-powered saw without the proper ventilation. They were cutting into the basement concrete. 

Caller: "I think we both have carbon monoxide poisoning."
911 dispatch: "OK, can you get out of your house?"
Caller: "I can get out of here but I can't get the other guy that's downstairs."
911 dispatch: "OK, can you open some windows?"
Caller: "I've already done all of that. I'm too weak to do anything else."
911 dispatch: "OK, and you said the other person in there is not able to wake up?"
Caller: "No, he's not able to wake up."
911 dispatch: "Did you see him breathing?"
Caller: "Yeah, I seen him breathing. I just came from down there."

Moments later, Canton Township firefighters arrived at the house. They thought it was just a medical call and ran into the home to help. Then they realized it was carbon monoxide. When they got back out of the house one of the firefighters collapsed. 

"They went down. They were able to extricate the victim from the basement. They carried him out on a sheet-type device. When they made it to the top of the stairs one of the firefighters felt ill. They were able to get out to the front lawn at which point that firefighter collapsed," said the fire chief. 

All four firefighters were rushed to the hospital, as were the two contractors. The firefighters were treated and released the next day. It's not known how the contractors are doing. 

About the Author:

Nick joined the Local 4 team in February of 2015. Prior to that he spent 6 years in Sacramento covering a long list of big stories including wildfires and earthquakes. Raised in Sterling Heights, he is no stranger to the deep history and pride Detroit has to offer.