Carbon monoxide from portable generators: how to avoid its deadly consequences?

Carbon monoxide from portable generators: how to avoid its deadly consequences?

Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless and tasteless gas, highly toxic to the organism that can kill. Carbon monoxide can be released in heating systems inside homes. It is categorically not recommended to use braziers as a source of heating for indoor environments. The braziers are responsible in 55% of cases of carbon monoxide poisoning, followed by natural draft gas stoves and boilers with open combustion chamber. In case with portable electric backup generators, it is strictly recommended to use them outside.

If you are looking for a portable electric generator at affordable prices, that emits less carbon monoxide (CO) and feature efficient, opt for Westinghouse iGen4500 portable generator. Never use this generator indoors or in a garage, even if the doors and windows are open. Only use the generators outdoors, more than 6 meters from your house, doors and windows.

Try to limit the uses

The interruption during the spring and summer season in the use of heating appliances and systems (boilers, stoves, fireplaces, wood stoves, etc.), associated with the absence of routine and extraordinary maintenance checks, increases the risk of intoxication, causing serious risks that can undermine the safety of the family, sometimes, also of any condominiums.

In case you do not have adequate heating means, it is desirable to use small electric heaters equipped with thermostat and “CE” marking or mobile stoves to be used, in any case, always in well-ventilated rooms, as required by law and in accordance with the retailer’s/manufacturer’s instruction book. So here is a card to understand exactly how monoxide is produced, what are the symptoms of poisoning and some useful tips.

What it is (CO): the silent killer?

Carbon monoxide is a toxic, colorless, odorless, tasteless and non-irritating gas which, without adequate ventilation, can reach high concentrations. It is a product of combustion emitted by petrol engines, stoves, stoves, generators, gas lamps, or that burn coal or wood. As reported by the Ministry of Health, monoxide is produced by incomplete combustion of any organic material, when there is little oxygen in the environment.

It can be inhaled imperceptibly until it reaches lethal concentrations in the body. In homes, under normal conditions, the levels are between 1.5 and 4.5 mg/m3. In the presence of combustion processes, the internal concentrations can exceed the external ones and reach levels up to 60 mg/m3.

What are the symptoms?

As reported by the experts, exposure to carbon monoxide can cause loss of consciousness and death. The most common symptoms of poisoning are headache, dizziness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, chest pains and confusion. People who are asleep or drunk may die before they have symptoms.

How to protect yourself?

To prevent the harmful effects caused by this dangerous toxic agent, it is necessary ​​– to subject the heating systems to regular maintenance by specialized personnel, to keep vehicle engines off in closed spaces, never use an oven or a gas stove to heat the house, do not use cooking systems designed for use in the open air in closed spaces, do not use portable generators inside the house or blocked room, etc. And, remember, you should install a type of sensor that detects carbon Monoxide leaks in the house.

It deserves your attention

Human poisoning occurs when monoxide builds up in the bloodstream. If there is too much concentration in the air, the body replaces the oxygen it needs in the red blood cells with carbon monoxide, which is invisible and has no odor or color. There is a lack of oxygen in the organs, vital for their functioning. Therefore, the recommendations are to avoid the use of braziers, likewise the connections and operation of water heaters or gas stoves. Also use electric power generators based on fossil fuels in open places.

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