Carbon monoxide - the silent killer

Blog Post created by judycomoletti Employee on Feb 11, 2013

The Boston area was hit with a blizzard that left hundreds of thousands without power. It made me think of the importance of reminding people about carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide is an invisible, odorless, colorless gas created when fuels burn incompletely. Make sure your home has carbon monoxide alarms on every level and outside each sleeping area. Test them monthly to be sure they are working. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Have fuel-burning heating equipment and chimneys inspected each year.
  • If you need to warm a vehicle, remove it from the garage immediately after starting it.
  • Make sure the exhaust pipe of a running vehicle is not covered with snow.
  • During and after a snowstorm, make sure vents for the dryer, furnace, stove, and fireplace are clear of snow build-up.
  • A generator should be sued in a well-ventilated location outdoors away from windows, doors and vent openings.
  • Gas or charcoal grills should only be used outside.
  • Crack a window for fresh air when using a fireplace, wood or pellett stove.

NFPA offers safety tips sheets on carbon monoxide, portable fireplace, heating, grilling and generator safety. Check out all our safety tips sheets.