Gateway Gazette

Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week focuses on safety

CO awareness weekAlbertans are encouraged to install and test their carbon monoxide alarms during Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week (Nov. 1-7).

Carbon monoxide is often referred to as a silent killer. It’s an odourless, colourless and toxic gas, and in an enclosed space, such as a home or garage, even a small amount can cause serious illness or death.

“By installing a carbon monoxide alarm and testing it regularly, we can all take a simple but important step in keeping our homes safe. This reminder during Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week could help save your life or the life of someone you love.”

Danielle Larivee, Minister of Municipal Affairs

“The dangers associated with carbon monoxide can be deadly. Carbon monoxide is a colourless, odourless and lethal gas. That’s why I encourage all Albertans to install a carbon monoxide alarm in their home and to test it regularly.”

Spence Sample, Acting Fire Commissioner, Municipal Affairs

“Having high levels of carbon monoxide gas in your home is dangerous and can even be tragic. Make sure you have a properly working carbon monoxide alarm on every level of your house, especially in or near bedrooms, as it is the only way to detect the deadly gas and warn your family to get out. If your carbon monoxide alarm goes off, call 911 and leave your house until the Fire Department lets you know it is safe to go back in.”

Steve Dongworth, Calgary Fire Chief

“Each year, ATCO Gas responds to more than 3,000 carbon monoxide-related service and emergency calls. Completing the ATCO Gas checklist remains one of the most effective ways for Albertans to protect their families from the dangers of carbon monoxide.”

Bill Stephens, President, ATCO Gas

This week, Albertans are asked to check their carbon monoxide alarms. Remember to:

  • test alarms once a month,
  • replace batteries once a year, if applicable,
  • vacuum alarms regularly, and
  • replace alarms every seven to 10 years, according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Carbon monoxide is produced through the incomplete combustion of a fuel. This can occur when a fuel-burning appliance, for example, your furnace is not properly maintained, a vent is blocked or damaged, or a vehicle is left running in an attached garage, even with the overhead door open.   This is particularly important now that winter is coming.

Carbon monoxide alarms provide the only warning of dangerous carbon monoxide gases in your home. Make sure you have a working carbon monoxide alarm, or combination smoke and carbon monoxide alarm, on every level of your home.

 

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