Seven members of a family, made up of the husband and his wife as well as five children, were on Thursday discovered dead inside their one-bedroom apartment in Rivers State after allegedly inhaling generator fumes.
The Nathaniels were said to have slept off in the sitting room while watching television, while their generator was still running.
The incident, which happened on Too-Much-Money Street, Big Elele, in the Ikwerre Local Government Area of Rivers State, shocked residents of the area as no member of the family survived the generator fumes.
It was gathered that the generator was kept in the kitchen while the fumes spread into the sitting room where members of the family were.
A source in the area told our correspondent that one of the deceased was Miracle Nathaniel, who was a JSS 1 pupil of one of the schools in the area.
The source, who gave her name simply as Prisca, said, “The street they were living is Too-Much-Money Street, Elele. This (Thursday) morning, people expected them to wake up as usual, but they did not come out.
“When some neighbours decided to check on them, they discovered that they were already dead in the sitting room. Residents suspected that they died as a result of inhaling carbon monoxide from the generator.
“The generator was left in the kitchen of the one-bedroom apartment. It could be that they were watching television and at a point, they slept off in the sitting room without putting off the generator.
“This morning, when neighbours went to check on them because they had not come out, they discovered that all of them had died; no member of the family survived it.”
It was learnt that the corpses of the deceased were later taken to their home town of Ihiagwa, Imo State, for burial.
“Their corpses have been taken to their village in Ihiagwa, Imo State. They were seven in number; the father, the mother and five children. I only know one of them, Miracle Nathaniel, who was about 10 years old,” Prisca added.
Speaking on the incident, the Rivers State Police Public Relations Officer, Nnamdi Omoni, confirmed the death of the family members, even as he described the development as pathetic.
“We are aware of the incident and it is sad. A family of seven made up of the father, the mother and five children were discovered dead this morning. They were suffocated to death by fumes from a generator.
“We have commenced investigation to unravel the circumstances that led to their death.”