Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

The BPD would like to remind residents to be cognizant of dangers related to carbon monoxide. Whether in a car or at home, the consequences can be deadly. As such, community members should be aware of the following safety tips.

What is carbon monoxide (CO)?
Often referred to as the silent killer, CO is a gas that you cannot see, taste or smell. It is created when fossil fuels such as kerosene, gasoline, natural gas, propane, methane or wood do not burn properly.

Where does carbon monoxide come from?
CO poisoning can result from faulty furnaces or other heating appliances, portable generators, water heaters, clothes dryers, or cars left running in garages.

What are the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning?
Symptoms of CO poisoning include headache, nausea and drowsiness. Exposure to undetected high levels of carbon monoxide can be fatal.

What should I do if I experience these symptoms?
Immediately move to a fresh air location, such as outdoors or by an open window or door, and make sure everyone inside is accounted for. Then, call 9-1-1. Remain at the fresh air location until emergency personnel arrive to assist you.

Precautions

  • Make sure that all fuel-burning appliances – including dryers, furnaces, fireplaces, and stoves – and venting equipment are unclogged of any debris and vented to the outside.

 

  • Before using a fireplace, open the damper for proper ventilation.

 

  • Avoid using an oven or stovetop to heat your home, as they emit CO gas.

 

  • Make sure the exhaust pipe of a running vehicle is not blocked with snow, ice or other debris. The CO gas might kill people and pets inside.

 

  • When shoveling out your vehicle, remove any snow or ice that might be blocking the exhaust pipe.

  • Never run a vehicle or other fueled engine inside, even if the garage doors are open. Remove a vehicle that you are trying to warm up from the garage immediately after starting it.

  • Only use barbecue grills outdoors and away from any building openings; never use them inside. Some grills produce CO gas.

  • Use portable generators outside and away from doors, windows, vents, and other building openings to prevent exhaust fumes from entering the home.