Carbon Monoxide a Real Threat
Every homeowner should take the time to educate themselves on the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning. It’s often read about, used a fear tactic by contractors, and mostly misunderstood. This post from the Sun describes what happened to a work crew using machinery with inadequate ventilation. This can and does happen in finished homes as well, and the problem is that the gas is colourless and odourless.
Three patients were taken from a home under construction in the Hamptons after likely carbon monoxide poisoning.
Emergency crews found four individuals in the home suffering effects from the potentially deadly gas Friday afternoon.
Fire spokesman Brian McAsey said levels in the home on Hamptons View N.W. were as high as 250 parts per million (ppm.)
To put it in to perspective he said fire crews typically started evacuating — especially pregnant women and children who are more vulnerable to CO poisoning — when levels reach 12-1/2 ppm.
“At 25 parts per million we start evacuation of the general public and at 35 everyone is out,” he said.
Once levels reach beyond that people can start fainting, slipping in an out of consciousness and extend exposure to high levels can be deadly.
McAsey said the source is believed to be a machine running in the basement, which was being tiled and wasn’t properly ventilated.
Someone else in the home called emergency crews.
EMS spokesman Adam Loria said three patient were transported in stable but non life-threatning condition to hospital.
A fourth patient declined treatment.
Carbon monoxide a colourless, odourless, tasteless gas that can cause illness or even death.
Any fuel-burning appliance can produce carbon monoxide if it is not installed, used, vented and maintained properly.
Symptoms include headaches, dizziness, nausea, confusion and loss of coordination or judgment.
Carbon monoxide detectors are advised in all homes and if poisoning is expected people and pets should leave the building and call 911.
What you need to do:
- Get a CO detector in your home. They range in price from $20 to $100+. Don’t buy the cheapest ones. They work, but they often end up causing false alarms and need to be replaced more frequently. If you have one, check it today and replace batteries every year!
- Have your gas appliances checked annually. Have a qualified technician check your furnace and water heater. If you haven’t had your appliances checked, do it now!
- Know what to do. Get clear on what to do when your detector goes off. More information found here.