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Woman dies, 4 others being treated after apparent carbon monoxide poisoning

They were ice fishing Sunday afternoon.

A woman died and four others were taken to hospitals from what's believed to be carbon monoxide poisoning.

The group was in an ice house on Lake Wilmert in rural Martin County Sunday afternoon, the sheriff's office says. A 21-year-old woman died at the scene, while a 20-year-old man was taken to St.Mary's Hospital in Rochester.

Three other adults were treated at local hospitals for carbon monoxide poisoning, officials said.

No other information has been released.

CO poisoning can happen quickly in small ice houses, the Hennepin County Medical Center says, which is why people should take the steps to prevent carbon monoxide (the odorless, tasteless, and invisible gas produced whenever any fuel is burned) from building up inside a shanty.

The hospital recommends having a working carbon monoxide detector in your ice house; making sure heating equipment and vent pipes are in good condition; keeping a window cracked for ventilation; not using fuel-burning equipment in your ice house; and not running a generator or a gas-powered engine outside an open window, door or vent where exhaust can come in.

Around 500 people in the U.S. die each year from unintentional CO poisoning, the Minnesota Department of Health says. CO poisoning was responsible for 59 deaths in Minnesota in the five years between 2010-2014.

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