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Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

By DOH-Escambia

December 12, 2014

PENSACOLA, FL – The Florida Department of Health in Escambia County reminds everyone to be vigilant of the causes and signs of carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide is an invisible, odorless, tasteless gas that can cause sudden illness or death. Carbon monoxide (CO) is produced by gasoline engines (such as cars and generators), kerosene stoves or lanterns, charcoal or wood fires, and gas ranges and heating systems. Common symptoms of CO poisoning include fatigue, weakness, chest pains, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, headaches, confusion, lack of coordination, impaired vision, and loss of consciousness.

The Florida Department of Health in Escambia County (FDOH-Escambia) recommends the following precautions to help prevent carbon monoxide poisoning:

• Have your heating system, water heater and any other gas, oil, or coal burning appliances serviced by a qualified technician every year.
• Install a battery-operated or battery back-up CO detector in your home and check or replace the battery when you change the time on your clocks each spring and fall. If the detector sounds leave your home immediately and call 911.
• Seek prompt medical attention if you suspect CO poisoning and are feeling dizzy, light-headed, or nauseous.
• Do not use a generator, charcoal grill, camp stove, or other gasoline or charcoal-burning device inside your home, basement, or garage. When using any of these items outdoors, do not place them near a window.
• Do not run a car or truck inside a garage attached to your house, even if you leave the door open.
• Do not burn anything in a stove or fireplace that isn't vented.
• Do not heat your house with a gas oven.
Remember that CO cannot be seen or smelled. Individuals who start to feel sick, dizzy, or weak should immediately get to fresh air. For a poisoning emergency, call the Florida Poison Information Center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call 911.

The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

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