Probe of houseboat peril sought; trio in Congress seeking inquiry
By Judd Slivka and Maureen West
The Arizona Republic
February 6, 2001

Three congressmen, including two from Arizona, want a congressional inquiry into a potentially deadly design flaw on houseboats.

Arizona Republicans J.D. Hayworth and Bob Stump on Monday joined Colorado Republican Scott McInnis in requesting hearings before the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation.

The hearings would look into the "death zone" beneath a houseboat's swim deck -- an area where deadly carbon monoxide fumes from a houseboat's generator can accumulate.

"Hearings can serve as the catalyst for us to move beyond the headlines to see what can be done," Hayworth said Monday.

"It gives us the chance to use Congress to catalog the repairs, to get the Coast Guard on the record about what they've done, to get the manufacturers on the record about what they've done."

Seven people died and 74 have suffered serious harm from carbon monoxide poisoning over the past decade while on houseboats at Lake Powell, federal researchers discovered in November. That announcement resulted in a spate of news stories around the country calling attention to the issue.

Now that the hearings have been requested, the chairman of the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation is responsible for scheduling it.

 

    Copyright 2001, The Arizona Republic. All rights reserved. This article graciously provided courtesy of The Arizona Republic.