|Escape from Fire||Practice Exit Drills||Carbon Monoxide||Chimney Fires|
|Fireplace Safety||Heating Safety||Winter Safety||Smoke Detectors|
|Fire Extinguishers||Child Set Fires||Vehicle Fires|
November 4, 2005, Governor Romney signed "Nicole's Law", named
after 7-year old Nicole Garofalo who died on January 28, 2005 when her
Plymouth, MA home was filled with deadly amounts of carbon monoxide on
January 24. The furnace vents had been blocked by snow during a power
outage. The Board of Fire Prevention Regulations has developed the regulations
(527 CMR 31.00) establishing the specific requirements of the law including
the type, location, maintenance and inspection requirements for the alarms.
Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Carbon monoxide (CO) detectors can be used as a backup but not as a replacement for proper use and maintenance of your fuel-burning appliances. You should not choose a CO detector solely on the basis of cost; do some research on the different features available. Carbon monoxide detectors should meet Underwriters Laboratories Inc. standards, have a long-term warranty, and be easily self-tested and reset to ensure proper functioning. For maximum effectiveness during sleeping hours, carbon monoxide detectors should be placed close to sleeping areas. They should also be located in the area of your heating equipment.
If your CO detector goes off, you should:
sure it is the CO detector and not the smoke alarm.
Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, colorless gas that interferes with the delivery of oxygen in the blood to the rest of the body. It is produced by the incomplete combustion of fuels.
What Are the Major Sources of CO?
Carbon monoxide is produced as a result of incomplete burning of carbon-containing fuels including coal, wood, charcoal, natural gas, and fuel oil. It can be emitted by combustion sources such as unvented kerosene and gas space heaters, furnaces, woodstoves, gas stoves, fireplaces and water heaters, automobile exhaust from attached garages, and tobacco smoke. Problems can arise as a result of improper installation, maintenance, or inadequate ventilation.
What Are the Health Effects?
Carbon monoxide interferes with the distribution of oxygen in the blood to the rest of the body. Depending on the amount inhaled, this gas can impede coordination, worsen cardiovascular conditions, and produce fatigue, headache, weakness, confusion, disorientation, nausea, and dizziness. Very high levels can cause death. The symptoms are sometimes confused with the flu or food poisoning. Fetuses, infants, elderly, and people with heart and respiratory illnesses are particularly at high risk for the adverse health effects of carbon monoxide. An estimated 300 people die each year as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning and thousands of others end up in hospital emergency rooms.
What Can Be Done to Prevent CO Poisoning?
that appliances are properly adjusted and working to manufacturers' instructions
and local building codes.
What If I Have Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?
symptoms, especially if more than one person is feeling them. If you think
you are suffering from carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning, you should:
Be prepared to answer the following questions:
anyone else in your household complaining of similar symptoms?
Information above courtesy of the Massachusetts Department of Fire Services
Safety tips in the home
Safety tips outside the home
If your CO alarm sounds
on this page reproduced with permission from the NFPA website, www.nfpa.org.