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Local News February 7th, 2008

San Marcos Family Suffers Carbon Monoxide (CO) Poisoning

Two adults and three children have been treated for carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning after San Marcos firefighters responded to a 911 call at 3:12 am last Wednesday morning from a resident on the 1200 block of Bridgehampton Street who reported feeling disoriented.

Upon arrival, firefighters found the presence of CO in the home. The victims were moved outside into fresh air, treated and then transported to UCSD Medical Center. San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E) has determined that a malfunction in the home’s gas furnace was the most likely cause.

In light of this incident, the San Marcos Fire Department wishes to remind the public about the dangers of carbon monoxide, especially during the colder winter months when heating devices are used more often.

Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas that interferes with the delivery of oxygen in the blood to the rest of the body. It can be emitted by combustible sources such as unvented kerosene and gas space heaters, furnaces, woodstoves, gas stoves, fireplaces and water heaters, automobile exhaust from attached garages and tobacco smoke.

This gas can impede coordination, worsen cardiovascular conditions and produce fatigue, headache, weakness, confusion, disorientation, nausea and dizziness. Very high levels can cause death. The symptoms are sometimes confused with the flu or food poisoning.

San Marcos Fire Department suggests the following tips to prevent CO poisoning:
• Ensure appliances are working according to instructions and building codes;
• Get annual inspections for heating systems, chimneys and flues; have them cleaned by a qualified technician;
• Open flues when fireplaces are in use;
• Use proper fuel in kerosene space heaters;
• Do not use ovens and gas ranges to heat your home;
• Do not burn charcoal inside a home, cabin, recreational vehicle or camper;
• Make sure stoves and heaters are vented to the outside and that exhaust systems do not leak;
• Do not use unvented gas or kerosene space heaters in enclosed spaces;
• Never leave a car or lawn mower engine running in a shed or garage, or in any enclosed space.
• Make sure your furnace has adequate intake of outside air.

Do not ignore symptoms if you suspect CO is present in your home, especially if more than one person is feeling them. If you think you are suffering from CO poisoning, you should:
• Immediately turn off and stop using the suspected appliance. Get fresh air immediately. Open doors and windows
•. Call 9-1-1 immediately if anyone in the home experiences possible carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms.
• Contact a licensed heating or plumbing contractor immediately or SDG&E at (800) 411-SDGE (7343) to have the appliance inspected.
• Do not use the suspected appliance until it has been inspected, serviced and determined to be safe by a licensed heating or plumbing contractor or SDG&E.

Carbon monoxide (CO) detectors can be used as a backup but not as a replacement for proper use and maintenance of your fuel-burning appliances. Carbon Monoxide detector technology is still being developed and the detectors are not generally considered to be as reliable as the smoke detectors found in homes today.

If your CO detector goes off, you should
• Call 9-1-1
• Make sure it is the CO detector and not the smoke alarm.
• Check to see if any member of your household is experiencing symptoms. If they are, get them out of the house immediately and seek medical attention.
• If no one is feeling symptoms, ventilate the home with fresh air and turn off all potential sources of CO.

For more information about the dangers of carbon monoxide, visit or call San Marcos Fire Battalion Chief Rick Vogt at (760) 744-1050, extension 3410.

Phony Fire Department Inspector Scam

The Escondido Fire Department and the Escondido Police Department are teaming up to warn business owners that persons in North San Diego County are fraudulently representing Fire Departments in order to bilk businesses out of large sums of money. These same people may be dressed to look like firefighters or may state that they have been sent to conduct an inspection of a business by the Fire Department or the Fire Marshal. They may even mention names of actual Fire Department inspectors in order to appear more legitimate.

Another scenario includes someone who walks around a business briefly and then asks the owner or manager to sign an “inspection form.” If asked for a copy of the inspection form, the store owner or manager is told that it will be sent in the mail. Some time later, the business will receive an invoice for the inspection in the mail with the owner/manager’s signature cut and pasted in. The invoice can range from $400 to $900 per business.

Other fraudulent inspectors may insist on installing equipment and/or signage that is actually not required. Or they may charge for servicing fire extinguishers without performing the work properly.

Still others will show up and advise that they were sent by the Fire Department to complete routine servicing of fire extinguishing or suppression equipment. Once the inspection or servicing is done, the fraudulent person requests immediate payment from a business owner, or in some cases, sends an invoice to be returned with payment to a post office box.

To avoid being victimized, the Escondido Fire Department reminds all local businesses that:
• Official representatives of the Escondido Fire Department wear dark blue uniforms with badges and shoulder patches and drive official city vehicles bearing the Seal of the City of Escondido
• Escondido Fire Department employees carry official City of
Escondido identification cards that include the word “FIRE” on the front. They do not hesitate to show this identification if asked to.
• The Escondido Fire Department NEVER uses private companies to conduct business inspections.
• Following an Escondido Fire Department inspection, a copy of the inspection form is always left with the business.
• Fire Department employees provide inspection services only and are not authorized to repair or replace fire equipment or to recommend companies that service or sell equipment.
• All invoices related to Escondido Fire Department inspections bear the City of Escondido name and address, 201 N. Broadway. Cash is not accepted on site at the businesses and checks or money orders must be made payable to the City of Escondido.
• Escondido Fire Department Administration can be contacted to confirm whether or not an inspector is authentic or calling 760-839-5400 during regular business hours or the Police Dispatch at 760-839-4722 after hours.

Anyone who offers - or demands - to inspect a business but does not meet these standards should not be confronted. Instead, the Escondido Police Department should be called at 760-839-4722 immediately. If the person has left or leaves before a police officer arrives, a description of the person and any other pertinent information should be given to the responding police officer. If unsure whether or not to contact the Police Department, businesses are urged to err on the side of caution and make the call.

If, in the past, a business was contacted by someone who may have been fraudulently misrepresenting himself or herself, the incident should be reported to the Escondido Fire Department at 760-839-5400.

For more information, please call 839-5411 or check the Escondido Fire Department Web site at

Anyone who can help identify a person or persons who may be fraudulently representing the Fire Department is asked to contact the Police Department directly or make an anonymous call to the Police Department’s “Anonymous Tip Line” at (760) 743-TIPS (8477)

Julio Iglesias Premium Backstage Passes Now Available

photoInternational Latin star Julio Iglesias, the most popular recording artist in the world, is still coming to the California Center for the Arts, Escondido, to sing his unique, heartfelt ballads. The originally scheduled November concert was rescheduled due to the wildfires. Julio Iglesias will now be in concert at the Center on April 11 at 8:00 p.m.

Iglesias has sold more than 250 million albums, and has been the recipient of more than 2,600 Platinum and Gold records in his illustrious musical career - an unsurpassed music record.

In addition to concert tickets, on sale now, the Center is providing a special backstage pass to a limited number of premium ticket holders. The 20 self- selected VIPs will get top-rate, center orchestra seating plus a backstage reception with Julio Iglesias. All tickets are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. VIP tickets cost $200 and are only available through the Center Ticket Office: (800) 988-4253.



Possible Small Hospital Planned for San Marcos

H.G. Fenton is proposing to building a University Office and Medical Park on Discovery Street in San Marcos. This is just west of CSU San Marcos.

The plan includes a healthcare facility and/or smaller scale hospital. The "Initial Study" shows 80,000 square feet of hospital space, and 250,000 square feet of Medical Office/Hospital space. The total size of the Hospital, Medical Office, and Professional Office space in the project would be 1,070,000 square feet!

“Les Miserables” Caps Moonlight Stage Productions’ 2008 Summer Season

Moonlight Stage Productions announced that it has secured the rights to present the Southern California regional theatre premiere of the international musical hit, “Les Misérables,” as part of the 2008 Summer Season of Musicals. The 28th Summer Season, which is presented at the Moonlight Amphitheatre in Brengle Terrace Park, will also include “Guys and Dolls” and “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.” Season packages for the 2008 Summer Season are on sale beginning April 12, and single tickets are available beginning May 17 at the VisTix Ticket Office, 600 Eucalyptus Avenue, or by calling (760) 724-2110.

The Music Men Set to Deliver Singing Valentines

Once again, select Barbershop Quartets from The Music Men – North County’s Premier A Cappella Chorus – are ready to deliver in-person Singing Valentines beginning Thursday morning, February 14 at 8 am and running through 8 pm that evening.
“What a great way to remember that Special Someone – be it your sweetheart, your husband, your wife – a co-worker – your favorite clerk or waitress – a special group or gathering – anyone and everyone,” said Don Dawson, this year’s chairman for The Music Men’s Singing Valentine Program. “It’s fun – it’s unique – it’s romantic,” he added.

Say “I Love You” with a Singing Valentine, a personalized card and balloon bouquet delivered to your sweetheart’s door or office.

For more details about pricing and scheduling, and to order by phone using your credit card, please call 760-443-8561. Please visit our website at

Fat Boy Robber Arrested?

27 year old Javier Ulloa was arrested at his home in the 300 block of Calle Mariposa in Oceanside recently on suspicion of robbery, said San Diego County sheriff's Sgt. Art Wager. Ulloa was in custody Tuesday on suspicion of robbing seven North County banks and one video store at gunpoint in what has been dubbed the case of the Fat Boy Bandit.

Sheriff's detectives have been working with FBI agents to solve a string of robberies of North County banks/businesses.





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