02/04/2013 10:54 BST | Updated 02/04/2013 14:24 BST

Windermere Deaths: Generator Possible Cause Of Suspected Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

A generator may have caused the deaths of a 10-year-old girl and her mother from suspected carbon monoxide poisoning, police have said.

Kelly Webster, 36, and her 10-year-old daughter, Lauren Thornton, both from Leyland in Lancashire, died while on a boating holiday in Windermere in the Lake District on Monday.

Cumbria Police said Ms Webster's partner, Matthew Eteson, 39, also from Leyland, was the third person on board the private vessel.

Mr Eteson, the owner of the boat, has been released from Royal Lancaster Infirmary following treatment.

Police said Mr Eteson raised the alarm after experiencing breathing difficulties.

Detective Inspector Mike Brown, who is leading the investigation, said Ms Webster and her daughter were both found in the rear of the boat.

He said he believed the deaths of Ms Webster and her daughter "may be as a result of carbon monoxide inhalation".

He said: "What we are looking at specifically is an aftermarket generator that has been fitted in the engine compartment of the boat which we believe may be the cause of this.

"But, again, it's still early stages in the investigation so we can't rule anything out."

Mr Brown added: "It's an absolute tragedy. Everyone is in bits over this."

Mr Eteson, who lives with Ms Webster in Leyland but is not Lauren's father, is listed as a director of family firm Etesons Ltd, which specialises in plumbing, heat and air conditioning installation.

Cumbria Police were called to a jetty near Bowness at around 4pm by the ambulance service after it was reported that three people on a privately-owned boat were having serious breathing difficulties.

Ms Webster and her daughter were treated by paramedics and were airlifted to Royal Lancaster Infirmary, where they tragically died.

Police are not treating the deaths as suspicious and inquiries are continuing to be conducted by officers on behalf of the coroner.

A number of floral tributes have been left outside Ms Webster's home address in Leyland.

One note read: "RIP Kelly and Lauren. Gone but never forgotten. Sarah X", while another said: "Kelly and Lauren, Thinking of you and your family at such a sad time. Love always Louise Waring."

A third message read: "Sad loss the lives of Kelly and Lauren. Liz xx" and a fourth said: "Kelly and Lauren, such a tragic loss, you will be sorely missed. May you rest in peace together, Fiona xxx"