Five medical students were found dead Monday in an apartment they shared in Beijing’s Choayang District, according to Xinhua.
Arriving at the rented house in Chaoyang District at around 8:30 am, emergency doctors found the five men, from Harbin Medical University in northeast China’s Heilongjiang Province, had all stopped breathing and had no pulse, police said.
Signs point to carbon monoxide poison, though authorities have yet to confirm the exact cause of death. A sixth roommate wasn’t home when the tragedy happened. They were all interns at the China-Japan Friendship Hospital.
If carbon monoxide is indeed confirmed as the cause, it would be the second such tragedy in a week, after 12 miners were poisoned in Heilongjiang province last Tuesday. (Incidentally, the same province where the medical interns were from.) Xinhua again:
Zhang [Fuguang, deputy head of the county government,] said an initial investigation showed that a dense buildup of carbon monoxide in the mine was caused by self-igniting coal in an old mine located adjacent to the Yongsheng mine.
Both incidents, of coures, come on the heels of the heartbreaking story in November of five street children in Bijie, Guizhou province who succumbed to carbon monoxide while huddling together in a dumpster and burning coals to keep warm. CO is, tragically, living up to its name as the silent killer.