Carbon monoxide: Tips you need to know - FOX 13 News

Carbon monoxide: Tips you need to know

Posted: Updated:
ATLANTA -

The carbon monoxide scare that sent 40 Atlanta elementary school students to the hospital on Monday highlights an unseen but very real danger.  Carbon monoxide poisoning can come on suddenly, and it can be deadly.  

This time of year is peak season for these kinds of poisonings.  It's getting colder outside, and people are firing up their heating systems.  Carbon monoxide is a gas that is produced by fuel-burning furnaces, stoves, hot water heaters and fireplaces.  Even your vehicle can be a source of CO poisoning.  

Decatur Fire Marshal Stephanie Burton says there are some things you can do to make sure your family stays safe from the threat of carbon monoxide poisoning.  

She warns that one of the reasons it's so dangerous is because you can't see it, and you can't smell it.  Burton says when it hits you, you might start to feel nauseous, dizzy, lightheaded or even a little sleepy.  Some people might even lie down, but if they do, they may not wake up.  By the time you start feeling sick, Burton says you're already in danger.

If this happens to you or your family, it's a good idea to get in a ventilated space—preferably outside your home—and all the fire department.  They're happy to come and check to see if high levels of carbon monoxide are present in your home.

Burton also says you need a carbon monoxide detector.  In fact, you can get one that is also a smoke detector, and they last about seven years.  The combination smoke-CO detectors will run about $25, but Decatur and other fire departments will install them for free.  

Burton says a big source of CO poisoning is your home's heating system, so you should get a professional to check out and make sure it's vented and working properly.  Also, you should never warm your vehicle in a garage without first opening the door and backing out at least part of the way.

Because carbon monoxide is heavier than oxygen, it pools low—making it most dangerous for children and pets.

Experts recommend placing carbon monoxide detectors near your bedrooms because you spend most of your time at home sleeping.  It's also a good idea to put one next to your hot water heater, and remember that even things like space heaters can produce fumes.  If it goes off, get outside and call 911.  It could save your family.

  • Good Day ArchiveMore>>

  • Back to School Jamboree with Hosea Feed The Hungry

    Back to School Jamboree with Hosea Feed The Hungry

    Hosea Feed the Hungry will host their annual Back to School Jamboree on Sunday, July 13, 2014 from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. at Turner Field. Children will receive a backpack filled with school supplies.

    Hosea Feed the Hungry will host their annual Back to School Jamboree on Sunday, July 13, 2014 from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. at Turner Field. Children will receive a backpack filled with school supplies.

  • SKYFOX Traffic

    Tips for navigating around Georgia Dome traffic

    Tips for navigating around Georgia Dome traffic

    Thursday, August 21 2014 9:16 AM EDT2014-08-21 13:16:27 GMT
    For the next three years, if you plan to be anywhere near the Georgia Dome, expect delays and plan ahead. That's the word from officials as we head into fall, the Dome's busiest time of the year.
    For the next three years, if you plan to be anywhere near the Georgia Dome, expect delays and plan ahead. That's the word from officials as we head into fall, the Dome's busiest time of the year.
  • Good Day Atlanta Extra

    Paula Deen: 'I'm happier, more solid, I'm smarter'

    Paula Deen: 'I'm happier, more solid, I'm smarter'

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 11:14 AM EDT2014-08-20 15:14:12 GMT
    Celebrity chef Paula Deen says she is 'happier and smarter' after a controversial year in the spotlight. Deen joined Good Day's Paul Milliken to candidly discuss the lessons she's learned, and her hopes for the future.
    Celebrity chef Paula Deen says she is 'happier and smarter' after a controversial year in the spotlight. Deen joined Good Day's Paul Milliken to candidly discuss the lessons she's learned, and her hopes for the future.
Powered by WorldNow

FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
3213 West Kennedy Blvd.
Tampa, Florida 33609
Main: (813) 876-1313
Newsroom: (813) 870-9630
Fax: (813) 871-3135

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices