Be aware of carbon monoxide dangers during power outages - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Be aware of carbon monoxide dangers during power outages

As Virginians experience power outages related to Hurricane Sandy, many people will begin using gas-powered appliances and charcoal or gas grills for electricity and cooking. Carbon monoxide exposure from these sources can be deadly.

 

The Virginia Department of Health reminds people to take precautions when using alternate sources of power.  Carbon monoxide exposure is a silent killer and the number of carbon monoxide poisoning cases and fatalities typically increases following severe weather events.

 

Carbon monoxide is an invisible, odorless, tasteless gas and is highly poisonous.  Depending on the level of exposure, carbon monoxide may cause:

-Fatigue

-Weakness

-Chest pains for those with heart disease

-Shortness of breath upon exertion

-Nausea

-Vomiting

-Headaches

-Confusion

-Lack of coordination

-Impaired vision

-Loss of consciousness

-In severe cases, death

 

VDH recommends the following precautions to help prevent carbon monoxide poisoning:

-Do not burn charcoal or gas grills inside a house, garage, vehicle, tent or fireplace.

-Never use a generator indoors, including in homes, garages, basements, crawl spaces and other enclosed or partially enclosed areas, even with ventilation.  Opening doors and windows or using fans will not prevent carbon monoxide build-up in the home. 

-Always locate the unit outdoors on a dry surface, away from doors, windows, vents and air-conditioning equipment that could allow carbon monoxide to come indoors.

-Follow the instructions that come with your generator.  Position the unit outdoors and away from doors, windows, vents and air conditioning equipment that could allow carbon monoxide to come indoors.

-Have your home heating systems (including chimneys and flues) inspected each year for proper operations and leakage.

-Install battery-operated carbon monoxide detectors or plug-in carbon monoxide detectors with battery back-up in your home, according to the manufacturer’s installation instructions.  -The carbon monoxide detectors should conform to the latest safety standards for carbon monoxide detectors (UL 2034, IAS 6-96, or CSA 6.19.01).

-Test your carbon monoxide detectors frequently and replace dead batteries.

-If your carbon monoxide detector indicates high levels of carbon monoxide, leave the building immediately and call 911.

-Remember that you cannot see or smell carbon monoxide and portable generators can produce high levels of carbon monoxide very quickly. 

-If you start to feel sick, dizzy, or weak while using a generator, get to fresh air right away.  Do not delay.

-If you have a poisoning emergency, call the national Poison Information Center number at (800) 222-1222.  If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call 911 immediately.

 

The CDC has prepared many card-sized carbon monoxide resources that can be printed and placed on generators and other emergency response sources of carbon monoxide. These resources are available at www.bt.cdc.gov/disasters/co-materials.asp.

For more information about how to protect yourself and your family before, during and after natural disasters, visit www.vdh.virginia.gov or the Virginia Department of Emergency Management’s Web site at www.vaemergency.gov.

  • Latest news from NBC12.comNEWSMore>>

  • Civil Rights Historians tell little known story of WWII vet

    Civil Rights Historians tell little known story of WWII vet

    Sunday, May 27 2018 11:04 AM EDT2018-05-27 15:04:17 GMT
    Sunday, May 27 2018 3:34 PM EDT2018-05-27 19:34:52 GMT
    (AP Photo/Christina L. Myers). This Saturday, May, 26, 2018, photo shows a sign for the town of Batesburg-Leesville, S.C. A group is trying to put up a memorial in the town to decorated African-American World War II veteran Sgt. Isaac Woodard, who was ...(AP Photo/Christina L. Myers). This Saturday, May, 26, 2018, photo shows a sign for the town of Batesburg-Leesville, S.C. A group is trying to put up a memorial in the town to decorated African-American World War II veteran Sgt. Isaac Woodard, who was ...

    The brutality inflicted against African American World War II veteran Sgt. Isaac Woodard by a Southern police chief is credited with inspiring President Harry Truman to integrate the military, but few people know...

    More >>

    The brutality inflicted against African American World War II veteran Sgt. Isaac Woodard by a Southern police chief is credited with inspiring President Harry Truman to integrate the military, but few people know his name.

    More >>
  • Freed after 2 years, man jailed in Venezuela returns to US

    Freed after 2 years, man jailed in Venezuela returns to US

    Saturday, May 26 2018 9:53 AM EDT2018-05-26 13:53:22 GMT
    Sunday, May 27 2018 3:35 PM EDT2018-05-27 19:35:38 GMT
    Senator Corker’s office tweeted out an image of Josh Holt and his wife before leaving Venezuela. (Source: Twitter/@SenBobCorker)Senator Corker’s office tweeted out an image of Josh Holt and his wife before leaving Venezuela. (Source: Twitter/@SenBobCorker)

    A Utah man has been released from a jail in Venezuela after spending nearly two years behind bars on weapons charges.

    More >>

    A Utah man has been released from a jail in Venezuela after spending nearly two years behind bars on weapons charges.

    More >>
  • Forgotten WWII battle raged 75 years ago on Alaska island

    Forgotten WWII battle raged 75 years ago on Alaska island

    Sunday, May 27 2018 11:34 AM EDT2018-05-27 15:34:09 GMT
    Sunday, May 27 2018 3:34 PM EDT2018-05-27 19:34:44 GMT
    (AP Photo/Mark Thiessen). In this May 19, 2018, photo World War II veterans Allan Seroll, left, of Massachusetts, and William Roy Dover, right, of Alabama, right, attend a 75th anniversary celebration of the Battle of Attu in Anchorage, Alaska. Dover w...(AP Photo/Mark Thiessen). In this May 19, 2018, photo World War II veterans Allan Seroll, left, of Massachusetts, and William Roy Dover, right, of Alabama, right, attend a 75th anniversary celebration of the Battle of Attu in Anchorage, Alaska. Dover w...

    One of the bloodiest World War II battles in the Pacific was waged 75 years ago this month on Attu Island in Alaska's Aleutian Islands.

    More >>

    One of the bloodiest World War II battles in the Pacific was waged 75 years ago this month on Attu Island in Alaska's Aleutian Islands.

    More >>
  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • McDonald's customers sue over paying for cheese on burgers

    McDonald's customers sue over paying for cheese on burgers

    Sunday, May 27 2018 6:35 AM EDT2018-05-27 10:35:01 GMT
    Sunday, May 27 2018 6:35 AM EDT2018-05-27 10:35:01 GMT
    The plantiffs claim McDonald's has been overcharging them because they have been paying for cheese they didn't want nor receive. (Source: Flickr)The plantiffs claim McDonald's has been overcharging them because they have been paying for cheese they didn't want nor receive. (Source: Flickr)

    The plaintiffs claim McDonald's has been "unjustly enriched" because customers have been paying for cheese they don't want.

    More >>

    The plaintiffs claim McDonald's has been "unjustly enriched" because customers have been paying for cheese they don't want.

    More >>
  • President George H.W. Bush back in hospital

    President George H.W. Bush back in hospital

    Sunday, May 27 2018 2:34 PM EDT2018-05-27 18:34:26 GMT
    Sunday, May 27 2018 3:03 PM EDT2018-05-27 19:03:34 GMT

    According to post-White House spokesman, Jim McGrath, former President George H.W. Bush was taken to Southern Maine Health Care today after experiencing low blood pressure and fatigue.

    More >>

    According to post-White House spokesman, Jim McGrath, former President George H.W. Bush was taken to Southern Maine Health Care today after experiencing low blood pressure and fatigue.

    More >>
  • Forgotten WWII battle raged 75 years ago on Alaska island

    Forgotten WWII battle raged 75 years ago on Alaska island

    Sunday, May 27 2018 11:34 AM EDT2018-05-27 15:34:09 GMT
    Sunday, May 27 2018 3:34 PM EDT2018-05-27 19:34:44 GMT
    (AP Photo/Mark Thiessen). In this May 19, 2018, photo World War II veterans Allan Seroll, left, of Massachusetts, and William Roy Dover, right, of Alabama, right, attend a 75th anniversary celebration of the Battle of Attu in Anchorage, Alaska. Dover w...(AP Photo/Mark Thiessen). In this May 19, 2018, photo World War II veterans Allan Seroll, left, of Massachusetts, and William Roy Dover, right, of Alabama, right, attend a 75th anniversary celebration of the Battle of Attu in Anchorage, Alaska. Dover w...

    One of the bloodiest World War II battles in the Pacific was waged 75 years ago this month on Attu Island in Alaska's Aleutian Islands.

    More >>

    One of the bloodiest World War II battles in the Pacific was waged 75 years ago this month on Attu Island in Alaska's Aleutian Islands.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly