A storm that hit the Capital District late last week and left more than 200,000 people without power had tragic consequences for a Glenville couple who were using a gas generator to power their home. Ralph and Mary Fazio were found dead the morning of Saturday, Dec. 13, of carbon monoxide poisoning, and authorities said the generator was the likely culprit.
Glenville police Lt. Rick Conley said the couple's daughters and son-in-law discovered their parents early Saturday.
[They] went to the house to check on the family. They were trying to call and there was no answer on the phone, said Conley.
Ralph Fazio, Jr., 65, was found downstairs and taken to Ellis Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. His wife, Mary Fazio, 61, was found dead in an upstairs bedroom.
"Carbon monoxide plays tricks on you. You kind of feel groggy and stuff like that, but it sneaks up on you. It's odorless, it's colorless, and it sneaks up on you before you know it," said John Nuzback, Schenectady County fire and EMS coordinator.
Officials say a gas-powered generator that was found in the Fazios' garage was the source of the high levels of carbon monoxide that filled the house. Officials found that there were two doors in the garage leading to the backyard; one was open and one was shut. They suspect that one of the doors had blown shut during the middle of the night due to high winds, causing the house to fill with the toxic levels of carbon monoxide due to lack of ventilation.
"The initial readings were 300 parts per million, and on a recheck with a second meter, the reads were 600 parts per million on the second floor, 300 parts per million on the first floor and 100 parts per million on the basement," said Bill Antrim, Thomas Corners Fire Department assistant fire chief.