Reports came in this morning about four guests at the San Francisco Marriott last night falling ill due to carbon monoxide poisoning.

KGO TV now has an update, reporting that the fire department responded to two separate calls regarding the same problem in the same hotel rooms on Tuesday of this week. The department believes that the hotel’s ventilation system is actually sucking exhaust fumes in from vehicles on the street.

From KGO:

…Four people got sick at the Marriott Hotel just before 11 last night – all with dizziness and nausea. A blood test showed carbon monoxide poisoning, but the source was and still is uncertain – though firefighters believe they know.

“The thinking right now is that it came in through?” asked ABC7’s Terry McSweeney.

“Through the air intake system and it basically just sucks the outside air in and then it goes through their ventilation system,” said Mindy Talmadge of the San Francisco fire department…

The affected rooms are right above Stevenson Street, where trucks and cars park, sometimes leaving their engines running. It’s possible the exhaust is what got into the rooms. But no other rooms were affected – not last time and not this time. It’s still a mystery and a disturbing one to some hotel guests.

Video report:

Multiple Cases of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning at San Francisco Marriott 7 January,2011Jon Brooks


Jon Brooks

Jon Brooks is the host and editor of KQED’s health and technology blog, Future of You. He is the former editor of KQED’s daily news blog, News Fix. A veteran blogger, he previously worked for Yahoo! in various news writing and editing roles. He was also the editor of, which documented user-generated content about the financial crisis and recession. Jon is also a playwright whose work has been produced in San Francisco, New York, Italy, and around the U.S. He has written about film for his own blog and studied film at Boston University. He has an MFA in Creative Writing from Brooklyn College.

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