Connie Dotson arrived back at her home in Lexington, Kentucky last week and parked her car in her garage, the Louisville Courier Journal reports.
She thought she pushed the keyless ignition button to turn off the vehicle. She headed inside and went to bed, not realizing her car was still running. Because she was deaf, she did not hear the beeping sound that alerts drivers that they need to turn off their cars.
Connie died of carbon monoxide poisoning after her attached garage and home filled with carbon monoxide. She was 54.
“Connie Dotson was a true leader in the deaf community,” Virginia Moore, executive director of the Kentucky Commission on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, told the Courier Journal. “She really did a lot for deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals. It’s just a big blow to us, and it’s senseless.”
Similar cases to Connie’s death are growing at an alarming rate, she said.
U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., introduced a bill earlier this year that would require automakers to install automatic engine shut-off and rollaway prevention systems in vehicles with keyless ignitions.