One Hunter Dead, One Critical From CO Poisoning
One hunter is dead and another remains in critical condition in Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh after they were overcome by carbon monoxide in their makeshift hunting camp on Four Mile near Pine Grove.
Brothers Joseph and Jason Brown were camping in a small utility trailer, much like a U-haul trailer, and using two small propane heaters inside the little trailer with no ventilation. “That will kill you,” noted Wetzel County Medical Examiner Carla McBee.
Unfortunately that was true for 38-year-old Joseph Brown of San Antonio, Texas, who McBee pronounced dead at the scene. He was transported to Palmer’s Funeral Home where she then contacted his family.
His brother, 37-year-old Jason Brown of Pittsburgh, Pa., was also overcome by the gas but was still alive when the first responders from the Pine Grove Volunteer Fire Department and Folsom Fire Department arrived on the scene after the county received the original call at 6:15 a.m. Monday.
The tragedy was discovered by relatives who were staying in a nearby cabin. Seeking the brothers, evidently to begin their planned hunting, they knocked on the door of the trailer, received no answer, and opened the door to find the brothers unresponsive.
“They had started doing what they could do for the patients,” noted McBee. The Wetzel County Emergency Medical Service began patient care when they arrived and then took Jason Brown to the Valley High School football field in Pine Grove and flew him out on a HealthNet helicopter. He was taken to Allegheny General Hospital because is has a hyperbaric chamber needed for CO poisoning recovery.
“Right now he’s still in fairly critical condition but he’s making improvements,” said Sheriff James Hoskins Tuesday afternoon.
According to McBee, Joseph Brown was an Registered Nurse in the military. Jason Brown is a reserve in the military. She was unsure of the military branches. Their parents are from Fairmont and they are related to many people in the local area.
Hoskins said the incident remains under investigation.