Be aware of dangers of carbon monoxide

The Jan. 4 News article regarding carbon monoxide detectors missed a chance to educate people about the dangers of CO and what precautions can be taken. Here are the key points:

Like smoke detectors, most hard-wired, electrically powered CO detectors have a battery backup that needs to be changed at least once per year.

People who can afford only one CO detector must place that detector in the area where occupants are sleeping so that the alarm wakes them up.

Smoke detectors have a 10-year service life, but CO detectors have a four- to eight-year service life before they need to be replaced.

Running a vehicle in an attached garage, even with the large overhead door open, can cause CO to enter the home, endangering people inside. Houses are under negative pressure, so the gas is “pulled” into the house through the pedestrian door that connects the house to the garage.

The good news is that folks are gaining knowledge regarding the hazards of carbon monoxide and are taking precautions, such as installing a CO detector on each level of their home and by calling 911 if the detectors go into alarm rather than attempting to solve the problems themselves. Local fire departments have meters to determine whether there is a problem and can implement appropriate measures to solve it.

Paul Griebner

Chief, Snyder Fire Department