CA Crews Save Anna Faris, Family from CO Exposure

North Tahoe firefighters were called to the "Mom" actress' Lake Tahoe rental home on Thanksgiving after family members became sick from carbon monoxide.

The Sacramento Bee
Anna Faris
Jay L. Clendenin | Los Angeles Times | TNS

Actress Anna Faris says firefighters helped save the lives of her family on Thanksgiving, when more than a dozen people were reportedly exposed to carbon monoxide at a vacation home she rented in the Lake Tahoe area.

Faris in a tweet last Friday, which was shared via retweet late Monday night by the North Tahoe Fire Protection District, wrote that “we were saved from carbon monoxide.”

“I’m not quite sure how to express gratitude to the north Lake Tahoe fire department – we were saved from carbon monoxide – it’s a stupidly dramatic story but I’m feeling very fortunate,” Faris tweeted.

Emergency crews responded on Thanksgiving to a vacation rental home, where 13 family members started to suffer with varying degrees of illness upon arrival to the home, the North Tahoe Fire Protection District said in a news release this week. The affected people initially attributed their illness to altitude sickness, the news release said.

During Thanksgiving dinner, two people transported themselves to a hospital, where staff identified the illness as carbon monoxide poisoning and informed the fire district, according to the release.

Of the 11 family members still at the home, two more were taken to the hospital and the other nine were treated on site, according to North Tahoe Fire.

Fire officials tested carbon monoxide levels, discovering they were as high as 55 parts per million, local news stations reported. That reading is more than triple the minimum level considered dangerous and more than five times the maximum indoor recommended level, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“A Thanksgiving celebration in Lake Tahoe could have turned into a tragedy for a family of 13 had it not been for two family members that left the holiday dinner to be checked out at a local hospital,” the news release said.

North Tahoe Fire spokeswoman Erin Holland said the fire district does not disclose patient information and could not confirm Faris’ involvement. But the fire district retweeted Faris’ post about the incident and shared stories from local news outlets that indicated Faris’ family had been treated. The fire department, in its retweet, said it was “#thankful for a happy ending” to the incident.

Faris live-tweeted several updates on her vacation, including a photo of her father and brother, between Wednesday morning and Thursday morning. Around 11:15 a.m. on Thanksgiving, Faris tweeted that she was hiding from her family in a bathroom, joking: “Dear family on the day of thanks – I love you all. Just a little more from the upstairs bath.”

Then, the tweets stopped until Friday evening, the actress’s 43rd birthday, when she posted to acknowledge the incident and thank the fire department. It was not clear whether she was among the four treated at the hospital.

Carbon monoxide (CO) is colorless and odorless, but can be detected. The fire district reported that the vacation rental home involved in last week’s incident did not have CO detectors installed.

“It’s not a bad idea to consider bringing your own alarm when you travel, just to be safe,” North Tahoe Fire Chief Mike Schwartz said in a statement.

Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include nausea, dizziness, chest pain, upset stomach and confusion, as well as other flu-like symptoms.

Faris has appeared in movies including “The House Bunny” and the “Scary Movie” series, and has starred in the CBS sitcom “Mom” since 2013.

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