Some experts refer to carbon monoxide as a silent killer because people don’t realize that they have had dangerous levels of exposure to the gas until they display symptoms, at which point their exposure is already extreme.
Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning can cause serious medical issues such as headaches and confusion, which can potentially lead to death. You might be aware that carbon monoxide is the production of combustion, which means that your car creates risk if it idles in a closed garage. However, you may have other risks in your household that you haven’t even considered.
Motorboats can potentially cause CO poisoning
Boats don’t typically idle in traffic the way that cars do, so they have minimal infrastructure for moving the gases that they produce away from the vehicle. Most motorboats will quickly leave behind their fumes in the open air as they travel across the water.
However, when people find themselves in a situation where they must move very slowly in a motorboat, the potential exists, especially for people in the back seats near the motor, to inhale potentially fatal amounts of carbon monoxide. Small children, in particular, could be at risk for dangerously high levels of CO exposure on a recreational boat.
Your home heating options could be a source of risk
Gas or coal furnaces, wood-burning stoves, gas stoves, fireplaces and hot water heaters can all potentially be sources of carbon monoxide poisoning. Even lanterns that burn gas can lead to a build-up of CO that causes issues, meaning that families must be careful even during power outages when using alternative lighting and heating options.
Other risks for dangerous levels of CO gas include burning coal in your home, using a generator inside, using a gas stove or range for heating instead of cooking, inadequate ventilation when using gas appliances and even using a camp grill or range to cook in the house.
Installing working CO detectors in your home can reduce your risk of falling ill if this gas begins to build up in your home. Sadly, people in rental units may only find out after falling ill that their landlord failed to install or maintain these critical safety devices. Those hurt by CO poisoning may have the right to seek compensation for their losses in certain situations.