Fires and Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
During the winter months, it is common to use the fireplace or other heating sources, such as natural gas, kerosene, and other fuels. Unless fireplaces, wood and gas stoves and gas appliances are properly vented, cleaned, and used, they can leak dangerous amounts of carbon monoxide—a deadly gas that you cannot see or smell. These and other appliances, such as space heaters, can also be fire hazards.
Headache - Weakness - Nausea or Vomiting - Dizziness - Confusion
Blurred Vision - Loss of Consciousness
If you think you may have carbon monoxide poisoning, get into fresh air and get medical care immediately.
Precautions to Take
- Call an inspector to have your chimneys and flues inspected – preferred annually.
- Open a window (when using a kerosene stove) – just a crack will do.
- Place smoke detectors and battery-operated carbon monoxide detectors in strategic places – especially in areas where you use fireplaces, wood stoves, or kerosene heaters.
- Make sure space heaters are at least 3 feet away from anything that might catch fire, such as curtains, bedding, and furniture.
- Never try to heat your home using a gas stove, charcoal grill, or other stoves not made for home heating.
If there is a fire, don't try to put it out. Leave the house and call 911.