North Coast MLA advocates carbon monoxide safety

North Coast MLA, Jennifer Rice, is urging British Columbians “don’t wait until it’s too late” to install and maintain carbon monoxide alarms during Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week from Nov. 1 to 7.

Fire departments, educators, government, and industry are working together to raise awareness across the province about the potential dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning, the symptoms, sources and prevention methods.

“Keep your family and friends safe by learning about the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning and how to prevent it,” Rice, who is also parliamentary secretary for emergency preparedness, said.

“We saw several tragic deaths in 2020 due to carbon monoxide poisoning. Don’t wait until it’s too late – keep your family and friends safe by learning about the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning and how to prevent it,” she said.

Carbon monoxide is a colourless, odourless and tasteless gas. It is produced when fuel, such as propane, gasoline, natural gas, heating oil or wood, doesn’t burn completely in fuel-burning appliances and devices. Carbon monoxide poisoning can cause flu-like symptoms, such as headaches, nausea, dizziness, confusion and drowsiness. At very high levels, it can cause death.

Carbon monoxide buildup has caused more than 150 deaths in B.C. since 2008.

“Take the opportunity to schedule your annual inspection of all fuel-burning appliances and chimneys in your residence. Install carbon monoxide alarms, which will detect the gas and alert anyone nearby about its presence,” Rice said.

In addition to installing carbon monoxide alarms on every floor in their home, British Columbians should test their alarms at least once a month to maintain and replace batteries in each unit if needed.

If you suspect someone may be experiencing carbon monoxide poisoning, or a carbon monoxide alarm goes off, get everyone outside immediately and call 911 or your local emergency number.

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