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Last week, I wrote about the two American tourists that were found dead in their room at the Rancho Pescadero, which is part of Hyatt’s Unbound Collection. Then I added a second post as the first responders who tended to these two were hospitalized. Now, it looks like a cause of death has been determined. As speculated, it was carbon monoxide poisoning.
Last Tuesday, John Heathco, 41, and Abby Lutz, 22 were found dead in their hotel room. Police and medical personnel arrived around 9:00 PM and found them unresponsive. They were pronounced dead at the scene with a cause of death suspected as “intoxication by substance to be determined.” Authorities said they had been dead for approximately 10-11 hours. There were no signs of foul play. The family launched a GoFundMe page to assist with funeral expenses.
First responders came to tend to these two and they quickly fell ill and needed to be hospitalized. They also have a GoFundMe to assist with medical bills.
Former employees have since come out and said that hotel management knew about gas leaks and handled them by shutting off the carbon monoxide detectors. The Attorney General of Baja California Sur, Daniel de la Rosa Anaya, has confirmed the cause of death was carbon monoxide poisoning. Authorities are now working to determine the cause and if criminal charges should be pressed.
The Los Angeles Times interviewed several employees. A former night manager reports that carbon monoxide detectors at the property sounded frequently when he worked there in 2022. His thoughts are that there are leaks in the lines that fuel the outdoor fire pits. Management decided to disable the alarms to quiet guest complaints around the noise. Now, as a result two people passed away in the hotel. Even after the incident, management seems to play this off as a minor issue and the hotel has not been shut down. This one is definitely being scratched off my list of Hyatt properties to visit.
Anthony’s Take: This is a sad situation and one that makes me angry when I think this could have avoided. The manager needs to be held liable for these deaths and the hotel needs to stop hosting guests until this is fully resolved.
(Featured Image: Hyatt.)
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