Woman dies, 3 children hospitalized after possible carbon monoxide poisoning in Pittsburg

A mother is dead and her three children, and their father, were hospitalized after Pittsburg police say they all may have been exposed to high levels of carbon monoxide.

A relative had called police on Thursday saying they hadn't heard from the family in several days and were worried about them, police said.

Officers went to the home at 7 p.m. that evening along Vincent Street. 

When officers arrived, they made contact with a man who was disoriented and incoherent. Police said they also found a woman inside who was unresponsive. Family members identified the woman as 52-year-old Crystal Stafford. Her three children, ages 6, 13 and 15 were also inside the home and sickened.

Crews from Pacific Gas and Electric came to the house and told authorities that they found a very high level of carbon monoxide was measured inside the house. And police believe everyone may have suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning. 

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Contra Costa Fire and medical crews took everyone inside the house to the hospital. The children are expected to recover but police said that the woman was pronounced dead at the scene.

Authorities said that the source of the exposure is believed to be from the heater for the residence; however, crews are still working to confirm this.  

It's not clear the location of the heater, but the Centers for Disease Control says to never have a heater or generator running inside your house. If it is located outside, CDC says it should not be near an open window.

Video at the scene shows the house lit up with Christmas lights and officers in the street talking to two women at one point. 

According to the CDC, more than 400 people are killed by accidental carbon monoxide exposure a year.