10 July 2011

Carbon monoxide silent killer

Appliance Repairs in Port Elizabeth
Carbon monoxide kills more than 480 people and sends 20000 people per year to the hospitals in the United States.

A person cannot see of smell CO (Carbon monoxide) but at high levels it can kill someone in minutes. CO is mainly produced in our domestic environment by appliances we use to burn fuels like;

• Gas
• Paraffin
• Oil
• Kerosene
• Wood
• Charcoal
• Fossil fuel (anthracite)

Fire Marshall Massoud Araghi of Ventura County says: “Carbon monoxide is a silent killer.” A new law has gone into effect on the 1 of July requiring homeowner’s to install carbon monoxide detector in their California homes which has a fireplace or fuel burning appliances or an attached garage

As a rule appliances are not hazards to our health, it is only when they are not serviced regularly or it malfunction. A lot more CO gets produced by an idling car (never idle your vehicle in the garage - even if the doors is open).

Early Signs and Symptoms of CO poisoning

• Headaches
• Nausea
• Dizziness
• Fainting
• Mental confusion

Immediate action should be taken if more that one person has these symptoms in one household or area.

Here in the Eastern Cape most homes have a indoor “Braai” (barbeques) due to the weather conditions. What people don’t realize most of the time they think their beer or wine was a bit off when they have a headache the day-after-the-night-before, but they never consider or give a second thought to Carbon Monoxide Poisoning.


PS: Although we don’t have laws or rules in South Africa to install CO detectors, it might be a good idea just to install one in your home anyway. ( especially if you tend to wake up with headaches?)