Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning is the leading cause of poisoning deaths in the United States. Here are some important facts to promote awareness, minimize risks, and prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.
What is carbon monoxide?
- Carbon monoxide is a gas that is produced whenever a fuel is burned, such as gas, kerosene, oil, charcoal, or wood.
- Carbon monoxide is colorless and odorless, making it difficult to detect without an alarm.
Sources of carbon monoxide in your residence:
- Any fuel burning equipment, including unvented space heaters and stoves.
- Blocked chimneys, rusted heat exchanger, a broken chimney flue, or any other fuel-burning equipment where combustion gases cannot exit the residence properly.
- Use of charcoal grills indoors and idling engines in an attached garage can also cause carbon monoxide to enter your residence.
Carbon monoxide poisoning can appear as flu-like symptoms or as nausea, dizziness, fatigue, disorientation, and/or vomiting. Symptoms may disappear or regress when you leave the home. However, if you are experiencing any of these symptoms, get fresh air and seek immediate medical attention. Also, inform the property manager/landlord.
Carbon monoxide alarms are vital in avoiding carbon monoxide poisoning. If you live off campus, it is recommended that you install a carbon monoxide detector, or speak with your landlord to ensure that one is installed. A limited number of detectors are available from the University Store on Fifth for just $15 each.
For further information on carbon monoxide poisoning, please visit the following websites.