(912) 354-1011 info@chathames.org

January Week 1
CARBON MONOXIDE HAZARDS

Dangers of Carbon Monoxide
· Carbon Monoxide (CO) is a gas you cannot see, taste or smell. It is often called
“the invisible killer.” It is created when fossil fuels, such as kerosene, gasoline,
coal, natural gas, propane, methane, or wood do not burn completely. CO gas
can kill people and pets.
· CO poisoning can result from malfunctioning or improperly vented furnaces or
other heating appliances, portable generators, water heaters, clothes dryers, or
cars left running in garages.
· Headache, nausea, and drowsiness are symptoms of CO poisoning. Exposure
to CO can be fatal.

Installation of CO Alarms
· Choose a CO alarm that has the label of a recognized testing laboratory.
· Install and maintain CO alarms inside your home to provide early warning of CO.
· When traveling or staying away from home, bring a travel CO alarm.
· Install and maintain CO alarms outside each separate sleeping area, on every level of the home, and in
other locations as required by laws, codes, or standards. Follow the manufacturer’s installation
instructions for placement and mounting height.
· For the best protection, have CO alarms that are interconnected throughout the home. When one
sounds, they all sound.
· If you have combination smoke-carbon monoxide alarms, follow the directions for smoke alarm
installation.
· CO alarms are not substitutes for smoke alarms and vice versa. Know the difference between the sound
of smoke alarms and the sound of CO alarms. the CO alarm according to manufacturer’s instructions or
when the end-of-life signal sounds.
· Know the difference between the sound of the CO alarm and the smoke alarm, and the low battery
signals. If the audible low-battery signal sounds, replace the batteries or replace the device. If the CO
alarm still sounds, get to a fresh air location and call 9-1-1.
· To keep CO alarms working, follow manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning. The instructions are
included in the package or can be found on the internet.

Inside the Home
· Have fuel-burning heating equipment (fireplaces, furnaces, water heaters, wood stoves, coal stoves, space
heaters, and portable heaters) and chimneys inspected by a professional every year.
· Open the damper for proper ventilation before using a fireplace.
· Never use an oven or stove top to heat your home.
· Purchase heating and cooking equipment that is listed by a qualified testing laboratory.
· Vent the exhaust from fuel-burning equipment to the outside to avoid CO poisoning. Keep the venting
clear and unblocked.

The Garage
· Remove vehicles from the garage right away after starting. The CO gas can kill people and pets.
· Never run a vehicle or other fueled engine or motor in a garage, even if garage doors are open.
· Make sure the exhaust pipe of a running vehicle is not blocked by snow, ice, or other materials.

Appliances
· Make sure vents for the dryer, furnace, stove and fireplace are clear of snow and other debris.
· Always use barbecue grills outside, away from all doors, windows, vents and other building openings. Grills
can produce CO gas. Never use grills inside the home or the garage, even if the doors are open.

Portable Generators
· Use portable generators outdoors in well-ventilated areas away from the home.
· If you are using a portable generator, make sure you have battery-operated CO alarms or plug-in CO alarms
with a battery backup in the home.

If Your Carbon Monoxide Alarm Sounds
· Immediately move to a fresh air location outdoors.
· Call 9-1-1 from the fresh air location. Remain there until emergency personnel arrive to assist you.

Topics provided by The Georgia Fire Fatality Task Force, for more information visit their website at For more information