The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) warns consumers on the Texas Gulf Coast to protect themselves against dangers in the aftermath of Hurricane Ike.
Portable gasoline generators can quickly produce high levels of poisonous carbon monoxide (CO) and should never be used indoors, including inside a home, basement, shed or garage, even if doors or windows are open. It is a colorless, odorless, poisonous gas; in other words a silent killer. CO from a generator used indoors can kill you and your loved ones in minutes.
Safety tips for portable generator usage:
Read the label on the generator, the owner’s manual, and follow the instructions.
Install CO alarms with battery backup in the home outside each sleeping area.
Get to fresh air immediately if you start to feel sick, weak or dizzy. CO poisoning from exposure to generator exhaust can quickly lead to incapacitation and death.
Burning charcoal in an enclosed space can rapidly produce lethal levels of carbon monoxide.
Discard electrical or gas appliances that have been wet because they pose electric shock and fire hazards. Before using your appliances, have a professional gas or electric company technician evaluate your home and replace all gas control valves, electrical wiring, circuit breakers, and fuses that have been under water.
Medical Analysis: CO poisoning is tough to treat, you have to have a high index of suspicious when somebody presents with the history and above mentioned symptoms. In severe cases patients will have to be admitted to hospital and treated in a hyperbaric chamber.
Carbon monoxide is the leading cause of accidental poisoning deaths in United States. The Centers for Disease Control estimates that carbon monoxide poisoning claims nearly 500 lives, and causes more than 15,000 visits to hospital emergency departments annually.