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Avoid Carbon Monoxide Poisoning By Operating Your Heating Sources Correctly

| December 27, 2013

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If you hear this sound, you should get to fresh air immediately and call 911. This is a carbon monoxide detector. Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless and tasteless gas that is generally a byproduct of incomplete combustion. Captain Vince Baldwin of the Presque Isle Fire Department says if you have been exposed to the gas, there are some symptoms.

“Headaches, a light one with some dizziness. You might have some nausea. Little bit more severe you might have some vomiting along with it. If you have a high dose of carbon monoxide, immediately it could lead to being unconscious, and to death,” says Baldwin.

As temperatures drop, people operate their furnaces, wood stoves and even generators. Baldwin says its important to operate them correctly.
“When a furnace malfunctions, the system will expel that carbon monoxide into the environment. Also, generators being used right now at times when you are out of power, they produce carbon monoxide,”says Baldwin.

Many people make the mistake of putting their generators indoors.

“You want to make sure you have these generators outside in a ventilated air space. Not in your home, not in your garage. Also, far enough away so that if you have a window that happens to be open, or an intake, you want to make sure that carbon monoxide isn’t near the intake,” says Baldwin.

Baldwin recommends that you should have your furnace serviced by a licensed professional every year, and if you operate a wood stove or run a generator, you want to make sure those are serviced properly as well. Another thing to keep in mind is keeping your chimney clean. Baldwin says these simple tips will keep you and your family warm and safe this winter.

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