Dagenham mum and her baby saved by carbon monoxide alarms

09:56 28 January 2013

Lucky escape: Claire Moloney holds her twins Ava, left, and Jake, who suffered carbon poisoning because of a faulty boiler

Lucky escape: Claire Moloney holds her twins Ava, left, and Jake, who suffered carbon poisoning because of a faulty boiler


A mum told how she feared for the health of her baby after a carbon monoxide leak in her home left them both suffering the effects of poisoning.

Claire Moloney, 40, was with her one-year-old son Jake in a room that contained a faulty boiler when she was struck down by an inexplicable migraine.

Two carbon monoxide alarms went off in her house and tests later revealed a tenth of the baby’s lungs were filled with the deadly gas.

But Claire said the true amount may have been as much as 30 per cent, as carbon monoxide poisoning drops by half every five hours and Jake had been in the room for half a day.

Luckily, medics took the pair to hospital and staff gave them the all clear within half an hour.

Mrs Moloney, of Western Avenue, Dagenham, said: “Thank God, the emergency services were in time.

“I started to feel quite ill - it was like the flu or like a strong migraine.

“I was more worried about Jake. He had a reading of 10 but this may have been half of what he had. He may have had 30 per cent in his lungs. I was quite upset and a bit tearful.”

Claire was doing some house chores in an upstairs room containing the central heating boiler when she fell ill at around 7pm on January 16.

Claire’s husband Paul and her other baby Ava, Jake’s twin sister, were in another room as the first carbon monoxide alarm went off. They did not require hospital treatment.

Claire went to the shops as her husband Paul checked the alarm batteries but the second carbon monoxide detector was also triggered.

Firefighters were called and detected a leak from the boiler and Claire and her baby son were taken to Queen’s Hospital in Romford.

Claire stayed at her mum’s for a few days and is now back at home after workers took out the old boiler and installed a new one in the loft.

She added: “I would never have a boiler in a room again.

“We still don’t know what’s happened. We are very lucky.”

The London Fire Brigade praised the family for keeping two alarms in their home and warned households about the risks of carbon monoxide, often described as a “silent killer” that is linked to at least 50 deaths a year.


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