Do Carbon Monoxide Detectors Save Lives?

As of July 1, 2008, the state of Florida requires that every building that has either a fossil fuel-burning heater or appliance, or that an attached garage also be equipped with a working carbon monoxide detector. Carbon monoxide is a poisonous, odorless and colorless gas that, when released in an unventilated area, can cause brain damage and/or death.

Carbon monoxide is a by-product of combustion. Florida law requires all new or newly renovated buildings to have hard-wired CO detectors or combination CO and smoke detectors within 10 feet of all rooms used for sleeping.

Despite legislation, carbon monoxide poisoning accidents do occur in Florida. During August of 2012 tropical storm Isaac caused widespread power failures, one of the most common causes of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Other common causes of CO poisoning include:

  • Poorly ventilated boat engines
  • Malfunctioning gas powered water heaters
  • Poorly ventilated gas or propane generators
  • Exposure to paint, solvents, paint-remover or degreaser
  • Improperly ventilated propane heaters or stoves

There are warning signs of carbon monoxide poisoning. When any of these symptoms are present, move quickly to a well-ventilated area and seek medical attention:

  • Dizziness
  • Blurred vision
  • Disorientation
  • Shortness of breath
  • Headache
  • Confusion
  • Fainting
  • Seizure
  • Memory loss

If you have been exposed to carbon monoxide due to the malfunction of a heater, generator, boat motor or carbon monoxide detector, contact a personal injury attorney. To determine if you are eligible to file a personal injury claim against the manufacturer of the product that put you in danger. Call the Palm Harbor Law Office of Paul B. Genet, P.A. at 727-538-8865 for a free consultation or contact us online.

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