DODGE CITY, Kan. (KAKE) – The Dodge City Fire Department said five people have been hospitalized with suspected carbon monoxide poisoning likely caused by a vehicle left running in a garage.

Local police and fire departments responded Monday morning to an undisclosed address in Dodge City. Firefighters said they found several people unconscious and barely breathing.

Officers rescued several people who were near a door while firefighters found others in the rooms. The fire department said it appeared the source of the carbon monoxide was from a vehicle driving through the garage.

The names and ages of those hospitalized were not disclosed. The department said on Facebook that the incident left them “fighting for their lives.”

It is not known how long the vehicle has been in operation.

“Remember that a moving vehicle inside a garage can and will produce large amounts of carbon monoxide which will enter the house,” the fire station said.

The post also contained ways to prevent this from happening again.

  • Avoiding certain activities can help prevent carbon monoxide build-up.
  • Do not drive your car in an enclosed space, even if it is a garage with the garage door open. Get out of the car or turn off the car.
  • Do not use a charcoal or gas grill inside your home or inside a tent. Use it outdoors or under a shelter with plenty of room for cross ventilation such as natural wind and fresh air.
  • Have your heaters professionally checked regularly, according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • An undersized exhaust vent in a water heater or furnace can interfere with the removal of carbon monoxide, causing backflow into your home. If you are replacing a furnace or gas appliance, make sure that the exhaust system meets the standards of the code in force.

“Just as there are smoke detectors, there are also carbon monoxide detectors. They look like smoke detectors. You may be able to purchase a combined smoke and carbon monoxide detector. Some can plug into the electrical outlet, while others can run on batteries alone. It is recommended to have both in your home. Install one near your bedroom. Have more installed on each level of your home.

Dodge City Fire and Development Services will install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors free of charge.

If you think you are exposed to carbon monoxide:

  • You and everyone in your house must leave immediately. Go outside and breathe in some fresh air.
  • Call 911 and ask for the fire department. If someone has nausea, dizziness, unusual drowsiness, or is unconscious, tell them you need an ambulance as well.
  • Stay outside until the fire brigade arrives. Do not go back inside the house whether or not you are starting to feel better.