MIDDLETOWN, Ohio -- A Middletown woman and her husband were hospitalized Wednesday after they were nearly overcome by fumes from multiple bug bombs released to kill “more than a thousand roaches” in their home, police said.
Lily Hoskins said she called 911 for help because she couldn’t breathe after setting off the foggers, or bug bombs, inside her home in the 1800 block of Minnesota Street.
"There were over thousands of roaches," Middletown Fire Marshal Jeff Spaulding said. “When we walked in, we could see that they were on all the vertical and horizontal surfaces, furniture and stuff and well as the floor.”
Hoskins, who lives with her handicapped husband and three grandchildren, said she disagrees with Spaulding’s interpretation of the number of insects in her home.
But she said she thought her bug problem was bad enough to take extreme measures.
Hoskins said she set off several foggers in the middle of the night when everyone else was asleep.
"(I put) one in the living room, one in the dining room, one in the kitchen and one in the patio," she said.
When Spaulding and other firefighters arrived at the home, they said the bug bombs affected them too.
“(They were) suffering from similar symptoms as the original victim,” he said. “They started to get scratchy throats and got fresh air to get rid of irritation.”
A total of five people were inside the house when the bug bombs went off, including two children, according to a police report.
The children were unharmed, officials said.
Middletown police said they don’t expect any charges to be filed, but Butler County Children Services was notified about the incident.
The family was back home Friday morning and said there were no longer bugs in the home.
Hoskins said the whole incident was blown out of proportion.
"This is something I’ve been doing for years,” she said.
Spaulding said total release foggers are safe to use if people follow directions. He said people should not be in the same room as the foggers once they are activated.
“Air out the area for 30 minutes,” Spaulding said.
The Journal-News contributed to this report.