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Family of five end up in hospital after using 'charcoal BBQ' to warm their home

An 18-month-old baby girl was one of five people who suffered suspected carbon monoxide poisoning at a unit in Sydney’s southwest.

NSW Ambulance was called to Cabramatta about 2am on Monday after reports of two adults and three children, who are believed to be family, were unwell.

The family were trying to keep warm inside their apartment by using barbecue heat beads, which were producing a lot of carbon monoxide, a Fire and Rescue NSW spokesman told Yahoo News Australia.

Three fire trucks – including their heavy hazmat truck – were sent to the scene.

Sydney firefighters and paramedics were called to a Cabramatta unit after five people suffered suspected carbon monoxide poisoning.
A family of five in Cabramatta have been hospitalised for suspected carbon monoxide poisoning. Source: Nine News

When paramedics arrived at the scene they assessed all five patients and determined they had suspected carbon monoxide poisoning, a NSW Ambulance spokesman told Yahoo News Australia.

An outdoor charcoal burner was used to heat the beads, according to 9News.

The family were taken to Liverpool Hospital in two different ambulances in stable conditions.

The spokesman could not confirm the ages of the adults but did say a six-year-old boy, a three-year-old girl and an 18-month-old girl were treated.

Fire and Rescue NSW team members stayed almost two hours to clear the affected apartment of the carbon monoxide.

The spokesman for the service warned people never to use heat beads inside a structure as they are designed to be used to be outside in the yard.

The family had been burning barbecue heat beads to keep warm inside their Cabramatta home.
A family of five in Cabramatta have been hospitalised for suspected carbon monoxide poisoning. Source: Nine News

“Avoid the use of external heating equipment inside your homes. This includes those that use 'heat beads' or LPG as a fuel source,” the Fire and Rescue NSW’s website said.

“This type of equipment is not suitable for indoor use and can lead to a build up of carbon monoxide which could be fatal.

“All heating devices should be used in accordance with manufacturer's recommended practices.”

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