Broken Arrow boy dies from carbon monoxide poisoning from family’s boat

BROKEN ARROW, Okla. — A Broken Arrow mother, Cassi Free, is hoping to spread awareness after losing her nine-year-old son, Andy, from carbon monoxide poisoning.

Free says early reports said the boy died from drowning at Lake Eufaula back on June 6, however, she says they later determined in an autopsy report that the boy had high levels of carbon monoxide after being on a boat at the lake.

Free says Andy fell off the back of the boat while the family was unpacking and loading their truck after a long day. She says the nine-year-old grew up around the water so they were confused how the boy could have drowned.

Free says an autopsy report showed that his COHb was 72 percent- a level that is beyond deadly. She says her son died from open-air Carbon Monoxide poisoning and passed out before he ever hit the water.

Free says there’s a risk on all boats that many families aren’t aware of- her family was one of them. She says many don’t know about the warning when buying a used boat. She says in the past 15 years, the family has owned four registered boats and never received a noticed of any dangerous conditions.

She says boat manufacturers are aware of the risk and have made modifications on newer models, but do not notify owners of used boats. She says more awareness needs to be spread, manufacturers need to do more- it could save a life.