Why is carbon monoxide dangerous? - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Why is carbon monoxide dangerous?

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A carbon monoxide detector is one way to protect your home. A carbon monoxide detector is one way to protect your home.
Another thing to do is check your furnace to make sure it's clean. Another thing to do is check your furnace to make sure it's clean.
(Toledo News Now) -

Carbon monoxide is a silent killer and there could be dangers in your home you don't even know about, which could leave you and your family exposed.

This deadly poisonous gas is produced by the incomplete burning of various fuels, including coal, wood, charcoal, oil, kerosene, propane, and natural gas.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, on average, 170 people die each year nationwide from carbon monoxide poisoning.

Because carbon monoxide is odorless, colorless, and otherwise undetectable, people may not know they are being exposed. Initial symptoms are similar to the flu, but without the fever.

Initial symptoms include:

-Headache

-Fatigue

-Shortness of breath

-Nausea

-Dizziness

More severe symptoms include:

-Mental confusion

-Vomiting

-Loss of muscular coordination

-Loss of consciousness

-Ultimately death

"If you feel like you've been exposed, you need to get out of the environment where you think you've been exposed and get all of your family and pets out," said Dr. Brian Kaminski from ProMedica.

One of the most important things you can do during this time of year is check your furnace to make sure it's clean. The simplest thing you can do is get a carbon monoxide detector.

On Thursday night, three people in Sylvania were rushed to the hospital because of carbon monoxide poisoning. Toledo fire officials want to share steps you can take to keep your home safe. 

"What we're looking for is when you look at these joints here. We're looking to make sure we don't see rust or soot that might be blowing back into any of these joints," explained Lt. Matthew Hertzfeld with Toledo Fire and Rescue. "At our vents, we want to make sure we don't see any soot, which could mean we could have a problem with our furnace, in addition to any missing panels in our furnace."

Carbon monoxide comes from the combustion of fuels. So if a gas appliance in your home is  improperly vented, it can lead to the deadly gas seeping into your home.

"Carbon monoxide issues can also arise with your stove. We don't use stoves for heating, so that's where we will run into a problem if someone is trying to use it for heating," said Hertzfeld.

Fire officials strongly advise installing a carbon monoxide detector in your home. They recommend placing it by bedrooms, where it can wake you if you're sleeping.

"The number one defense to prevent carbon monoxide in your home is to have those regular inspections and services by a company that specializes in that work," said Hertzfeld.

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