Carbon monoxide, also known as CO, is called the “Invisible Killer” because it’s a colorless, odorless, poisonous gas. More than 150 people in the Unites States die every year from accidental non-fire-related CO poisoning associated with consumer products, such as generators. Other products include faulty, improperly-used or incorrectly-vented fuel-burning appliances such as furnaces, stoves, water heaters, and fireplaces.
Know the Symptoms of CO Poisoning
Because CO is odorless, colorless, and otherwise undetectable to the human senses, people may not know that they are being exposed. The initial symptoms of low-to-moderate CO poisoning are similar to the flu (but without the fever). They include:
• Shortness of breath
High level CO poisoning results in progressively more severe symptoms, including:
• Mental confusion
• Loss of muscular coordination
• Loss of consciousness
• Ultimately death
Learn what you can do to protect your family from the dangers of Carbon Monoxide.
Install and maintain CO alarms inside your home to provide early warning of CO.
Install CO alarms in a central location outside each separate sleeping area and on every level of your home.
Use portable generators outdoors in well-ventilated areas away from all doors, windows, and vents.
Make sure vents for the dryer, furnace, stove, and fireplace are clear of snow and other debris.
Source: Consumer Product Safety Commission