Mother and daughter died after CO poisoning in Wilrijk: smoldering barbecue found in home (Wilrijk)

Neighbors and relatives have placed flowers at the house in the Lijsterbeslei in Wilrijk to commemorate Louise (44) and her daughter Deborah (23). The Antwerp police arrived on the scene on Tuesday evening after an emergency call because no one opened the door. “The intervention team decided to enter the house. The inspectors’ CO meters immediately sounded an alarm,” said spokesperson Wouter Bruyns of the Antwerp police.

Police found the bodies of Louise and Deborah in the home. The victims were still evacuated and the rushed medical services took over the resuscitation, but unfortunately all help came too late. The women died of CO poisoning, possibly caused by a smoldering barbecue in the house.

The fire brigade and police do not want to give too much information about the Wilrijk incident because the investigation is still ongoing, but it seems that the women had lit the barbecue as a cheap alternative to heating.

“This is really harrowing. At the fire service, we are looking forward to the coming winter,” said spokesman Kristof Geens. “With the energy crisis, people are looking for alternatives to heat themselves in a cheap way. Setting up a barbecue in the house is never a good idea. Not to barbecue and not to warm you.”

A boy next door worked with Deborah in the Colruyt. “She was incredibly sweet and helpful. At work she always provided a cheerful note and team spirit. It’s just really weird to realize she’s gone.”


Fire Brigade Zone Antwerp therefore wants to warn people to be extra vigilant for carbon monoxide. A poorly maintained boiler can already cause you to contract CO intoxication. “If you notice that you have a tendency to vomit, get a headache, are suddenly tired or are dizzy, you should remove yourself from the room as soon as possible,” says Geens.

“In that case, get yourself to safety immediately. Go outside, open windows and doors and call the emergency services as soon as possible via 112,” said Geens. “From the moment you notice that you have the symptoms, you are already intoxicated. Then you have to go to the hospital anyway for further follow-up. But by all means avoid falling unconscious.”

The fire service also points out some dangers. “Don’t use alternatives or obsolete heaters, like kerosene heaters. In recent weeks we have also regularly seen the flower pots with the tea lights in the media, they are also dangerous. And certainly don’t make an open fire inside or use very cheap heating devices. Those things can just as easily cause you to become intoxicated with carbon monoxide.”




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