According to the National Safety Council, even though carbon monoxide detectors save lives, less than one-third of American homes have one installed.
Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas that often goes undetected, striking victims caught off guard or in their sleep. This is a particular concern during colder winter months as we keep our windows and doors closed off to the outside weather, keeping heat – and potential carbon monoxide buildup – inside our homes. As gas builds up in enclosed spaces, people or animals who breathe it can be poisoned. During the cold winter months, it’s important to take extra precautions.
The National Safety Council has additional information about the dangers of carbon monoxide and ways to protect yourself here.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, because CO is odorless, colorless, and otherwise undetectable to the human senses, people may not know that they are being exposed. The initial symptoms of low to moderate CO poisoning are similar to the flu (but without the fever). They include:
High level CO poisoning results in progressively more severe symptoms, including:
To learn more about how to protect your family from carbon monoxide poisoning, click here.