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Carbon monoxide Poisoning Suspected in Death of Truck Driver

web posted January 7, 2014

COUNTY LINE Edgefield County saw the first death of the year Monday afternoon after deputies were called to the RV Park on Powell Place, just off Highway 25, to do a welfare check on a truck driver that never showed up for work. When deputies pried open the door to the 25-30 foot camper they found the man dead on the floor. The initial cause of death is believed to be from carbon monoxide poisoning from a propane heater found still burning in the camper.

The identity of the 53-year-old man has not been released at this writing.

Edgefield County Sheriff's Chief Investigator Randy Doran said deputies found the man on the floor next to the bed, still wearing his clothes. At this time it is believed he was overcome by the fumes and was unable to reach fresh air before collapsing.

The man's sister called the Sheriff's Office around 2 pm Monday after he failed to show up for work Monday morning. When she arrived there was no answer at the door, which was locked from the inside, and his vehicle was parked outside.

The Sheriff's crime scene investigator was called to document the scene and the Coroner's Office pronounced the man dead on scene. The time of death is unknown at this time.

"At this time we think it's carbon monoxide," Inv. Doran said. "They found the heater still burning and the camper was air tight, not even a window cracked." An autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday morning in Newberry to determine the actual cause of death.

The heater was described as a burner atop a small propane tank and is similar to the one pictured above. The man borrowed the heater from a friend on Friday, the last time anyone spoke to him before his death was discovered on Monday. "He called the friend Friday night because he didn't think the heater was working properly," Inv. Doran said. "He asked him some questions and I guess was able to get it working."

Preliminary results of the autopsy should be available sometime Tuesday afternoon. At this time the death is considered to be accidental.

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