We have all seen TV footage of the tragic scene: a family perishes in their home while sleeping in the night. Deadly carbon monoxide gas crept through their bedrooms, and they had no idea it was happening. A fire official is interviewed who, with a weary face, reports that the family had no carbon monoxide detectors installed in their home. We shake our heads in sadness at the unnecessary loss of life. We review in our heads our own readiness for something like this. Maybe we already have detectors installed and up to par with fresh batteries. Maybe we don’t. We add it to our mental “to do” list: “Get carbon monoxide detectors,” or, “Grab fresh batteries next store run.” Culver City security dealers like Pacific Alarms want you to be informed about the threat and to take the action necessary to keep your family safe.
Carbon monoxide is an odorless, invisible gas that builds up in enclosed or semi-enclosed areas whenever a fossil fuel such as gasoline, propane, natural gas, wood, oil, or charcoal is burned. Because cells absorb CO more easily than oxygen, if it is present in the air our bodies will shut out the oxygen so necessary for life and choose the CO instead.
Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include headache, nausea, dizziness, vomiting, confusion, fatigue and chest pain. Because these symptoms mimic the flu, people within the home may assume they are ill. CO levels continue to build and death may occur. If the build-up happens at night while all are sleeping, household members may become very sick without ever experiencing symptoms. This silent killer takes more than 400 lives (most susceptible to death are those 65 and older) in this country each year. It brings approximately 20,000 to emergency rooms and results in approximately 4,000 hospitalizations. Infants and young children fall ill more quickly because of their smaller bodies. Persons with anemia, chronic heart disease and respiratory problems are also easily affected by CO build up.
Home security in Los Angeles is critical. Many steps can be taken to prevent build-up of carbon monoxide in the home. Make sure your home is adequately ventilated. Never use a stove, portable flameless chemical heaters, generators, BBQs (charcoal or propane) or camping stove indoors. Ensure water heaters, furnaces and any coal or oil-burning appliances are checked once a year by a qualified technician. Make sure chimneys are not blocked, and have them cleaned professionally once a year. Open the garage door if you are running your vehicle.
These are important preventive steps to take. However, the most important element in protecting those you love from carbon monoxide poisoning is a CO detector. Install one outside every sleeping area and refresh batteries regularly (a good way to remember this is to change them when we adjust our clocks forward or back with daylight savings/standard time, i.e. twice a year). Have regular family emergency drills so everyone knows what to do if the alarms go off. Have an agreed-on meeting place and call 911 from there.
Pacific Alarms can professionally check your home for any potential threats from carbon monoxide poisoning. These Culver City security dealers have years of experience ensuring home security Los Angeles, and can be trusted to partner with you in keeping your family protected from this invisible threat. Go to www.pacificalarms.com for more information.