Generator fumes caused deaths

A mother and her 10-year-old daughter died after being poisoned by carbon monoxide fumes as they slept on a moored boat on Lake Windermere, according to the initial findings of a marine accident investigation.

Fumes killed mother and daughter on Windermere boat

A mother and her 10-year-old daughter died after being poisoned by carbon monoxide fumes as they slept on a moored boat on Lake Windermere, according to the initial findings of a marine accident investigation.

Exhaust fumes from a generator, whose improvised exhaust and silencer system had become detached, had spread into the cabin where Kelly Webster, 36, and daughter Lauren Thornton were asleep.

Lauren Thornton and her mother Kelly Webster, 36, died after being poisoned by carbon monoxide fumes as they slept.
Lauren Thornton and her mother Kelly Webster, 36, died after being poisoned by carbon monoxide fumes as they slept. Credit: Cumbria Police/PA Wire

"The boat's carbon monoxide sensor system did not alarm because it was not connected to a power supply," said an interim report by the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB).

A full MAIB report into the incident will follow later.

Advertisement

Police: Deaths not being treated as suspicious

A 39-year-old man who survived the Windermere boat incident remains in Royal Lancaster Infirmary receiving treatment today.

Cumbria police confirmed that it is not treating the deaths of a mother and her young daughter who were on the boat as suspicious:

Police are not treating the deaths as suspicious, and it is suspected that the deaths were caused by some form of gas poisoning.

Inquiries continue to be conducted by officers on behalf of the coroner.

– Cumbria Police statement

Advertisement

Report: 'Faulty generator' caused boat tragedy

Private jetty where the victims' boat was moored in Windermere
Private jetty where the victims' boat was moored in Windermere Credit: ITV News Border

The deaths of a 36-year-old woman and a 10-year-old girl in Windermere may have been caused by a faulty boat generator, The Telegraph reported.

Tony Rothwell, who manages Bowness Bay marina, said lake wardens told him that the victims' boat had been fitted with a faulty generator, which was connected to a fan heater.

Mr Rothwell said: "It was an amateur job, the boat had been fitted with a generator and the exhaust has leaked. It had been a very cold day and the fan heater was connected to the generator. It is a terrible tragedy."

Duncan Bannatyne: 'Tragic' incident on Windermere

The unfolding incident, at a jetty near Bowness, was witnessed by businessman and television personality Duncan Bannatyne who remarked on the police and ambulance activity to his followers on Twitter.

Duncan Bannatyne tweeted: 'Tragic accident over there I am afraid'
Duncan Bannatyne tweeted: 'Tragic accident over there I am afraid' Credit: Twitter/@DuncanBannatyne

The Dragon's Den star later posted a photograph of the scene, saying: "Tragic accident over there I am afraid."

Police: Man receiving treatment in hospital

Cumbria Police can confirm that at approximately 4pm today, they attended an incident at Lake Windermere, where it was reported that three people on a private on a boat on Lake Windermere were having serious breathing difficulties.

Police attended along with an ambulance crew. A 36-year-old woman and a 10-year-old girl, both from the Leyland area, were treated at the scene and then air lifted to Royal Lancaster Infirmary, unfortunately both have since tragically died.

A man, who was also on the boat, is still receiving treatment at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary.

– Cumbria Police
Load more updates