This just came over from the Bronxville Police Department e-alert system:
There have been several cases of high levels of carbon monoxide sickening residents in Westchester County in the past few weeks. While we have not had any cases here in the village, it is important to realize the danger associated with elevated levels of carbon monoxide in your home or place of employment.
Be sure to maintain functioning carbon monoxide detectors in your home or place of employment in addition to regular smoke detectors. Below is some useful information related to carbon monoxide.
Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless and toxic gas. Because it is impossible to see, taste or smell the toxic fumes, CO can kill you before you are aware it is in your home. At lower levels of exposure, CO causes mild effects that are often mistaken for the flu. These symptoms include headaches, dizziness, disorientation, nausea and fatigue. The effects of CO exposure can vary greatly from person to person depending on age, overall health and the concentration and length of exposure.
Health Effects Associated with Carbon Monoxide
At low concentrations, fatigue in healthy people and chest pain in people with heart disease. At higher concentrations, impaired vision and coordination; headaches; dizziness; confusion; nausea. Can cause flu-like symptoms that clear up after leaving home. Fatal at very high concentrations. Acute effects are due to the formation of carboxyhemoglobin in the blood, which inhibits oxygen intake. At moderate concentrations, angina, impaired vision, and reduced brain function may result. At higher concentrations, CO exposure can be fatal.
Steps to Reduce Exposure to Carbon Monoxide
It is most important to be sure combustion equipment is maintained and properly adjusted. Vehicular use should be carefully managed adjacent to buildings and in vocational programs. Additional ventilation can be used as a temporary measure when high levels of CO are expected for short periods of time.
• Keep gas appliances properly adjusted.
• Consider purchasing a vented space heater when replacing an unvented one.
• Use proper fuel in kerosene space heaters.
• Install and use an exhaust fan vented to outdoors over gas stoves.
• Open flues when fireplaces are in use.
• Choose properly sized wood stoves that are certified to meet EPA emission standards. Make certain that doors on all wood stoves fit tightly.
• Have a trained professional inspect, clean, and tune-up central heating system (furnaces, flues, and chimneys) annually. Repair any leaks promptly.
• Do not idle the car inside garage.
• Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC): Portable generators are useful when temporary or remote electric power is needed, but they also can be hazardous. The primary hazards to avoid when using a generator are carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning from the toxic engine exhaust, electric shock or electrocution, and fire – www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/pubs/portgen.html
If at any time you believe that you are suffering from carbon monoxide exposure, leave your location immediately and call 911.
Chief Christopher Satriale