The Effects of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Carbon monoxide is a gas commonly used in a range of household appliances such as stoves, lanterns and heating systems. CO has no odour, colour or taste, making it virtually impossible for a human to detect.
When gas combusts, it always produces a small amount of Carbon Monoxide which is fine so long as the appliance is setup correctly and free of faults or leaks. But when CO escapes it can be deadly!
What are the symptoms of CO poisoning?
The symptoms will come on quite quickly, so they will show up while you’re using a gas appliance, or immediately after doing so. They include:
- headaches (both mild or severe)
- shortness of breath
- continued sleepiness
- nausea and vomiting
- loss of consciousness
It can even result in death and kills 1 person in Victoria every year.
Are some groups more susceptible than others?
Yes, young children, elderly people, pregnant women, and people with anaemia or heart disease can all be more sensitive to carbon monoxide. If you believe someone you know has suffered CO poisoning, dial 000 and if they have become unconscious, follow these steps.
How Can I Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?
CO poising is a result of badly maintained gas appliances, thus it is crucial to get them tested and serviced regularly. At least every 2 years. Also make sure all your gas appliances have sufficient ventilation so no build up of harmful combustive products.
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