3 US Tourists Die Of Gas Inhalation In Mexico City Airbnb

Tourists were found dead in an apartment in a suspected carbon monoxide poisoning incident

General view shows the housing complex where three American tourists were found dead in an apartment last week due to carbon monoxide poisoning, as Mexican authorities confirmed to Reuters on Wednesday, in Mexico City, Mexico, November 9, 2022

Mexico City: Three American tourists were found dead last week in a Mexico City apartment they were renting after apparent carbon monoxide poisoning, Mexican authorities confirmed to Reuters on Wednesday.

Friends Kandace Florence, Jordan Marshall and Courtez Hall were visiting the Mexican capital to celebrate the Day of the Dead holiday, according to US news site WAVY, based in Virginia Beach, Virginia, where Florence and Marshall were from.

The Mexico City Attorney General’s office, which opened an investigation into the deaths, said the victims’ bodies were found Oct. 30 and that studies indicated they died of carbon monoxide poisoning.

The victims were staying in La Rosita, a neighborhood in the Mexico City borough of Cuajimalpa and close to the upscale Santa Fe business district.

Airbnb did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but in a comment to Bloomberg said the deaths were a “terrible tragedy” and that the company was ready to assist with inquiries from authorities.

The tragedy comes as an influx of Americans and other foreigners visit and move to Mexico.

Last month, Mexico City’s government signed an agreement with the short-term rental site in what Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum described as an effort to boost the number of “digital nomads” coming to Mexico City.

Gas leaks have caused other deadly incidents involving tourists in Mexico.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – For Jennifer Marshall, her son, Jordan, was a lifelong learner with a passion for teaching and traveling.

“He loved to do history tours, and just immerse himself completely in the culture, in the cuisine, the history of different places,” Marshall said.

She said Jordan, along with his friends, Kandace Florence and Courtez Hall, made a long weekend trip to Mexico to celebrate Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead).

Days later, on Halloween, she found out her son and friends were found dead inside an Airbnb property in Mexico City.

“They went down to celebrate that for the long weekend, and that was the outcome,” Marshall said.

Wednesday, News 3 learned of new details surrounding their deaths. According to the Associated Press, police in Mexico City police said they believe the three were victims of gas inhalation.

The AP also went on to report that police said the three were found unresponsive back on October 30th. Post-mortem exams suggested all three died of carbon monoxide poisoning, and police also went on to say security guards at the apartment building called, “after they detected an intense smell of gas in an apartment.”

“We’ve heard so many different reports,” Marshall said.

Marshall told News 3 since she found out about her son’s death, it has been a roller coaster of emotions.

“We’re getting information, mostly by social media posts, and we’re getting information from reporters and news outlets,” Marshall said. “We’ve yet to hear from any U.S. official, U.S. Embassy from Mexico City. That’s been, I think, the most frustrating part.”

She hopes to get more support soon as Jordan’s celebration of life is planned for this Friday.

“We want to make sure that we give him a beautiful homegoing service,” Marshall said. “We, I think, draw comfort in the fact that, in his 28 short years, Jordan lived a very full and fulfilling life.”

Wednesday, News 3 got a response from the State Department regarding this case. A spokesperson with the department told News 3 they continue to monitor the Mexican authorities’ investigation into the death of three U.S. citizens and await the public announcement of their official findings. They also continue to provide all appropriate consular assistance to the families.

Wednesday night, News 3 reached out to Airbnb about the situation. In a statement, a spokesperson for Airbnb told News 3, “This is a terrible tragedy, and our thoughts are with the families and loved ones as they grieve such an unimaginable loss. Our priority right now is supporting those impacted as the authorities investigate what happened, and we stand ready to assist with their inquiries however we can.”

Airbnb’s spokesperson said the company has suspended the listing and canceled upcoming reservations as we investigate. They’re also in touch with the Host and providing their support.

They said Airbnb has also been in touch with the U.S. Embassy regarding the tragedy.

Marshall also told News 3 her family is advocating to mandate carbon monoxide detectors in all Airbnb properties worldwide, regardless of their location.

“We will honor Jordan forever. We will honor him, and we will fight so that no other family will have to endure the pain and heartache that we’ve had to endure,” Marshall said. “We have three vibrant souls that have been ripped away for a senseless incident that could’ve easily been avoided.”

It’s unclear whether any carbon monoxide detectors were in the Airbnb property in Mexico City where the three were found.

News 3 also asked Airbnb about their policy regarding carbon monoxide detectors in properties.

A company spokesperson told us the following:

“Our global teams work each and every day to promote safe travel for our community. We run a global detector program [airbnb.com], giving away combined smoke and CO detectors at no cost to all eligible Hosts. To date, over 200,000 Hosts globally have ordered a detector through this program. We encourage all Hosts to confirm that they have a smoke and CO detector installed, and homes that report having a detector are clearly marked, so this information is visible to guests. Guests can also filter listings by homes that report having them. If a guest books a listing where a Host has not yet reported detectors present, we flag this so they’re aware and can take precautionary steps [airbnb.com] as needed. In Mexico, Airbnb has worked with the Secretariat of Comprehensive Risk Management and Civil Protection of Mexico City to launch [news.airbnb.com] an information campaign aimed at Hosts to promote safety best practices. In addition, we introduced updates to our free global smoke and CO detector program to expedite shipments for Hosts in Mexico.”

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