Carbon Monoxide (CO) is a poisonous gas which is produced from burning fuels such as wood, oil, natural gas, kerosene, coal, and gasoline. Because CO is invisible, odorless, tasteless, and non-irritating, the gas can kill you before you are aware of its presence. There are many steps you can take to reduce the risk of getting sick or dying from CO gas poisoning. The following materials provide information about CO, sources of CO, and actions you can take to prevent CO poisoning:
- Fact Sheet: What You Need to Know about Carbon Monoxide. This fact sheet provides general information on CO: sources, impacts on the body and poisoning prevention.
- Carbon Monoxide: Know the Hazards. There are many sources of CO including generators, power equipment, household appliances, barbeque grills, lawn equipment, wood stoves, fireplaces, and automobiles. This fact sheet provides tips on proper maintenance and operation of these potentially dangerous CO producers to help you avoid illness and death. Instructions on installation and use of CO detectors are included.
- Generator Safety
- Poster: Generator Safety. The simple dos and don'ts of operating a power generator.
- Video: How Close is Too Close for Portable Generators? U.S. Department of Commerce, National Institute of Standards and Technology
You may use this order form (PDF, 195KB, 2pg.) to request copies of carbon monoxide and other preparedness materials.
- U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
- U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - The Quiet Killer
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency - An Introduction to Indoor Air Quality
- Amanda's Law: This law was passed in 2009 and was named for a 16-year-old who died of CO poisoning from a leak in a defective boiler. Amanda's Law requires that CO detectors be installed in all dwellings including single- and multiple-family homes, apartment buildings, hotels/motels, boarding houses, fraternity and sorority buildings, school dormitories, etc. Previously, only some residences built or bought after July 30, 2002 were required to have CO detectors.