Detectors make a difference

Carbon monoxide detectors make a difference. Here are some cases where they saved lives. (Flickr / Creative Commons / Judy van der Velden)

By Jennifer Ball

In a near tragedy in Greenburgh, NY, part of Westchester County, detectors saved hundreds of children. In carbon monoxide poisonings, detectors make a difference. In the daycare, on Friday, May 26, hundreds of children were sent out into the rainy weather that morning after the carbon monoxide detectors went off in the building. When the detectors went off, they instituted their emergency plan and got the kids to the community center nearby. Investigators determined that the carbon monoxide levels were higher in the kitchen. The building was ventilated, and the source of the carbon monoxide was isolated. The children were allowed back into the building when levels returned to normal. As the article from News 12 Westchester stated, detectors made all the difference.

We represent students at a school carbon monoxide poisoning in Girard, IL, North Mac Middle School. The warning of the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning were the kids, staff, and teachers getting sick. They did not have carbon monoxide detectors to tell them of the dangers sooner. Their bodies were the alarms. Carbon monoxide detectors would have signalled the exact danger and would have caused an earlier evacuation. Carbon monoxide detectors must also be stored in areas where people are, not just in the boiler room, where someone might not hear it right away when they go off.

Another example of a school carbon monoxide poisoning was also in Illinois. Horace Mann Middle School in Chicago, IL was evacuated after carbon monoxide detectors went off, according to DNA Info. The newly installed detectors warned them of the dangers and caused an earlier evacuation than the Girard school carbon monoxide poisoning, for example. However, according to the article, they still waited a couple of hours before contacting the fire department. It is important to act quickly in carbon monoxide poisoning situations. Carbon monoxide can overtake people fairly quickly.

Another example of carbon monoxide detectors making the difference is in the case of the Austin police officers. An Austin police officer was sickened by his very own cruiser. Exhaust was seeping into the cabin of the Ford Explorers, sickening police officers. In response, the department installed a carbon monoxide alert system. When the officer was notified of the carbon monoxide gas leaking into the cabin, he was able to notify the city’s fleet services department. This was a better situation compared to the police officer who crashed his car into a tree due to carbon monoxide poisoning in his Ford Explorer in Newport Beach, CA. The Austin police officer that prompted the installation of detectors had felt sick and ended up hitting a curb. For more information on those situations, see this link:

A carbon monoxide detector warned a family in Hobart, IN to a carbon monoxide poisoning in their residence. The detector actually saved a baby’s life. Babies are more vulnerable to carbon monoxide because their bodies are smaller. The baby in the apartment building was just three months old.

The beeping of a carbon monoxide detector and a sick resident alerted the building manager to the high levels of carbon monoxide in a Boulder, CO building. He called the fire department, who rescued several residents and a few pets. The building was evacuated, and the fire department investigated the source of the carbon monoxide.

These are some of the cases where carbon monoxide detectors save lives. Carbon monoxide detectors make a difference. They can be a valuable tool for survival in any place you spend time, such as hotels, schools, boats, homes, and businesses. These situations remind us to have working carbon monoxide detectors in our homes and businesses, and to check and change the batteries every six months.

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