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Carbon Monoxide

Medical experts agree...

Carbon monoxide (CO) is dangerous! Hundreds die each year from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning. Here's some information to help protect you and your family...

What is carbon monoxide?

Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, tasteless, and colorless gas which could be created whenever a fuel (such as wood, gasoline, coal, natural gas, kerosene, etc.) is burning. However, sometimes other odors and smells are present with carbon monoxide.

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You may be exposed to carbon monoxide gas when:

  1. You leave your car, truck or van engine running
  2. Your home contains as incorrectly vented or malfunctioning hot water heater, furnace, space heater, fireplace or kitchen cooking stove
  3. You burn charcoal, alcohol or gasoline in an enclosed tent, camper or room you smoke a cigar, cigarette or pipe

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How does carbon monoxide harm you?

Quite simply, carbon monoxide prevents oxygen from being used by your body. Carbon monoxide is poisonous and can harm your central nervous system and even your heart.

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Who is at risk?

Everyone is at risk of being poisoned by carbon monoxide. However, individuals with existing health problems such as heart and lung disease and the elderly are especially vulnerable. Infants, children and pregnant women are also at high risk.

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What are the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning?

Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning mimics many common illnesses such as the flu and food poisoning.

Some of the common symptoms associated with carbon monoxide poisoning are:

  1. Headaches
  2. Dizziness
  3. Weakness
  4. Nausea
  5. Rapid heartbeat
  6. Seizures
  7. Cardiac arrest
  8. Loss of hearing
  9. Blurry vision
  10. Vomiting
  11. Disorientation
  12. Loss of consciousness
  13. Coma
  14. Respiratory failure

This list is not meant to serve as a diagnosis of carbon monoxide poisoning, but it is meant to provide information on carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms. Always check with your doctor.

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What can I do to protect myself and my family?

You should have your furnace and fireplace cleaned and inspected before each heating season. Use non-electrical space heaters only in well-ventilated areas. Don't start or leave running cars, trucks or other vehicles in an enclosed area.

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Carbon Monoxide Home Alarms

Use carbon monoxide home alarms to help alert you to increased CO levels.


Follow these simple guidelines:

  1. CALL if your detector alarm sounds and you are experiencing symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, leave the premises and immediately call 911 or your local emergency services number.
  2. CHECK if your detector alarm sounds and you have no symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning: First check the detector, push the reset button (if available), turn off any appliances or other sources of combustion, and get fresh air to the building. Adjust, repair or replace as needed by calling a qualified heating service or appliance repair company.
  3. ALWAYS if you think you have symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning and you do not have a detector, leave the premises and immediately call 911, if available in your local area, or your local emergency services number.

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Cumberland County, NC.
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Fayetteville, NC 28301