Carbon monoxide is often called the invisible killer. It's a colorless, odorless gas that is created when fuels like gas, coal, propane, wood and charcoal burn. Carbon monoxide poisoning can be fatal and often happens when appliances are malfunctioning, or when they are being used incorrectly. Here are some important safety tips and reminders:
Have Working Carbon Monoxide Alarms
CO alarms should be installed outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home. Place CO alarms 15 feet away from fuel burning appliances. Interconnected alarms offer the best protection. A number of Co alarms are expiring in our area. If your carbon monoxide alarms are ten years or older, or if they are chirping every 30 seconds that means it is time for them to be replaced. Test your alarms once every month.
Never burn gas or charcoal grills indoors or in confined spaces - this includes garages, tents, mobile homes, etc.
Do not leave vehicles idling in your garage, even with the doors open.
Operate gas powered appliances like generators, outside, a safe distance away from doors, windows and vent openings. Garages are no exception.
Never use your oven to hear your home, and do not burn charcoal in your fireplace.
Have and gas appliances as well as fireplaces and woodstoves checked every year by a professional. Make sure chimneys and flues are in good condition and aren't blocked.
A CO alarm that chirps continuously and does not stop could indicate CO is present. If this happens, move to a location with fresh air outdoors and call 911. Stay there until emergency services arrive.