Authorities are investigating whether a carbon monoxide leak in a Rogers Park apartment building led to two deaths there Sunday afternoon.
Paramedics were initially called to the 5-unit apartment building in the 2500 block of North Shore Avenue at 10:39 a.m. to respond to a person in cardiac arrest, Fire Media Affairs spokeswoman Meg Ahlheim said.
They took that woman to Swedish Covenant Hospital in critical condition, Ahlheim said.
While at the building, they found another woman who was sick and transported her in serious condition, also to Swedish Covenant.
Rasheeda Akhter, 77, and Zanib Ahmed, 18, were both pronounced dead at the hospital, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner' s office, which added that both lived at the building. Autopsies for Akhter and Ahmed are scheduled for Monday.
Crews took carbon monoxide meters into the building, but found no reading of the gas in any of the units, Ahlheim said.
Emergency crews left, but were called back to the building about 3:45 p.m. on reports that a 80-year-old woman had become unconscious, Fire Media Affairs Director Larry Langford said. She was taken to St. Francis Hospital in Evanston in critical condition.
Six children from the building were taken by family members to St. Francis Hospital, Langford said. One of the children was later transferred to Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge for treatment for carbon monoxide poisioning.
Again crews used carbon monoxide meters throughout the building and found none in any apartment unit. They did, however, register carbon monoxide readings next to a basement water tank, but not a significant amount that would have required evacuating the building, Ahlheim said.
Crews ventilated the building and called Peoples Gas, who turned the gas off to the unit, Langford said.
Peoples Gas spokeswoman Jennifer Block confirmed the utility's crews responded to the building, but declined to comment further, other than to say that the utility is supporting police and fire officials in their investigation.
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CHICAGO (AP) - Authorities in Chicago are trying to determine if carbon monoxide killed two women and sent six other people to the hospital.
The Chicago Fire Department responded to the building in the city's West Rogers Park neighborhood Sunday and rushed the two women to a hospital, where they died. Autopsies are planned on 77-year-old Rasheeda Akhter and 18-year-old Zanid Ahmed.
Emergency crews didn't find carbon monoxide in their initial tests. But the crews were called to the building again hours later when another person fell ill.
Authorities say a 74-year-old woman and five children between the ages of 5 and 12 ultimately were taken to the hospital.
Copyright © 2013 Associated Press