The Dangers of Carbon Monoxide & Safety Tips

April 3, 2018 | By Polito & Harrington LLC
The Dangers of Carbon Monoxide & Safety Tips

Everyone should be aware of the risks of carbon monoxide poisoning at home, however, many people do not understand the scope of the problem. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports the following statistics regarding carbon monoxide poisoning:

  • About 20,000 people visit an emergency department each year due to possible poisoning
  • About 4,000 people are admitted to the hospital due to the effects of carbon monoxide poisoning
  • About 400 people from non-fire-related carbon monoxide poisoning each year in the U.S.
Carbon monoxide (CO) can result from using many different types of everyday tools and appliances. CO is in the fumes from motor vehicles, generators and other small engine-based appliances, gas ranges, furnaces, stoves, fireplaces, grills, and more. Chances are, you have something in your home that presents a risk of carbon monoxide fumes.

Carbon monoxide is particularly dangerous because it has no odor or color. Often, the gas can go undetected until it has caused serious harm or even death. For this reason, it is critical for everyone to understand the risks and take proper precautions to keep you and your family safe from CO poisoning.

Risk Factors

When you breathe too much CO, it replaces the oxygen in your bloodstream and without adequate oxygen, your body will shut down. While carbon monoxide poisoning can happen to anyone, very small children, older adults, and people with breathing issues, anemia, or heart disease may be at a greater risk.

Know the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning and if you notice any possible symptoms in you or your family, immediately get out of the house and head to the emergency department. Symptoms can include:

  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Drowsiness
  • Confusion
  • Increased heart rate or breathing
  • Chest pain
  • Problems with your vision
  • Seizures
If you seek medical help, you can undergo oxygen therapy to get your blood-oxygen back to normal. On the other hand, if you remain in a home or building with CO fumes, you could become unconscious and poisoning may be fatal. Do not take any chances if anyone is displaying these symptoms - it is always worth getting out of the house as it can often save your lives. Longer exposure can also result in long-term effects.

Have the Right Detectors

One of the best ways to protect against carbon monoxide poisoning is to have detectors throughout your home or office. Make sure they are in working order and never ignore a detector alarm. Additionally, make sure you use all gas-powered vehicles and appliances in accordance with the safety instructions. Properly maintain any fireplaces, wood-burning stoves, chimneys, and other such risks in your home.

Consult with an Experienced Norwich, CT Personal Injury Lawyer for Help

Sometimes, people can suffer CO poisoning due to someone else’s negligence. In such cases, the negligent party should be held liable for all of the losses resulting from the poisoning, including medical expenses, missed work, or even wrongful death. The injury attorneys at Polito & Harrington are here for victims of carbon monoxide poisoning and other household injuries.

Contact us online or call our office at 860-447-3300 to discuss your situation for free.