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Beware Of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning



In October of 2013, a family of four sadly passed away in yet another incident of carbon monoxide poisoning. The death of the family from Merrillville, Indiana, once again brings to the fore the real danger posed by carbon monoxide. It is also proof that despite various campaigns and information dissemination from all quarters, a good number of people still don’t fully appreciate the potential dangers of burning fuels in poorly ventilated spaces.

The four consisted of two parents and their 13 year old son and 11 year old daughter. They had just moved into the place and resorted to using a generator in the attached garage as there was no power in the property. Apparently all the doors and windows were closed and this effectively left them with no chance at all. The husband was a carpenter whereas the wife was an assistant to the dean of education at the Chicago State University. The whole community is still shaken by this needless loss of life. Their daughter had a love for music and writing and it’s sad to know that she won’t be able to realize her dreams. It is perhaps quite important to understand just how carbon monoxide manages to be a killer.

What Makes Carbon Monoxide Dangerous?


  • The first thing that makes carbon monoxide dangerous is that it is a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas. This makes it hard to detect without the use of a proper carbon monoxide detector.
  • Carbon monoxide is also less dense than air and this causes it to rise and spread into ‘all the spaces available.
  • Another dangerous quality is the set of poisoning symptoms that mirror those of a common cold. This makes sustained incidents of mild poisoning quite hard to detect until it’s too late in most of the cases.
  • The last but obviously most deadly quality of them all is what carbon monoxide does to your body. Carbon monoxide is attracted to hemoglobin which it combines with to produce carboxyhemoglobin. Carboxyhemoglobin then goes on to occupy the space that is normally reserved for oxygen within the hemoglobin. This results in a failure by your blood to transport oxygen to the rest of the body. Organs that have high oxygen usage are the first to succumb leading to death.

Know more about the ways in which carbon monoxide can be produced in your home or workplace. Discuss the symptoms with your family and most important of all, buy a carbon monoxide detector.

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