There were two carbon monoxide cases in Florida and New York in the news today. One was presumably a result of the aftermath of the storm Hurricane Matthew. The other one was not. Details in both cases are not yet clear.
The first case involved twelve people in Volusia County, Florida, which is located in the east-central part of the state. The Volusia County website stated that there were 240,000-plus outages at the height of the storm. Power companies have restored more than 225,700 of those as of this morning.
When the power goes out, it can be an instinctive reaction to run a generator in the garage of a home, but this is not okay. You must take it outside when running a generator. Never operate it in an enclosed area like a garage or crawlspace. Also it’s important to place it downwind, so the toxic gas carbon monoxide does not fill your home and put you and your loved ones at risk. This could have possibly been the cause of the poisoning in this case.
If you feel dizzy or sick while operating a generator, get to fresh air immediately. Do not delay. Also make sure that the generator stays dry. Short circuits can occur in wet conditions, causing a generator fire.
In this Florida case, twelve people were taken to the hospital. Some were asymptomatic upon arrival. A carbon monoxide alarm alerted them to the danger, according to WFTV News.
The second case was not a result of the power outages caused by Hurricane Matthew, but the cause of the carbon monoxide poisoning is still unclear. The poisoning occurred in a Selden, New York doctor’s office, a hamlet in the Town of Brookhaven in Suffolk County.
The incident occurred just before 9 a.m. on Boyle Road, according to News 12 Long Island. According to officials, up to 30 people are being evaluated for carbon monoxide poisoning, and 21 people were taken to the hospital for further evaluation.
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