Monday, October 3, 2022
HomeSafety and RescueKillingworth AmbulanceKVFC Responds to Dangerous Carbon Monoxide Incident

KVFC Responds to Dangerous Carbon Monoxide Incident

Submitted by Michelle Ford, KFVC.

(March 22, 2022) — This past Monday at approximately 2:30 a.m., the Killingworth Volunteer Fire Company and Killingworth Ambulance Association (KAA) were called to a residence for a lingering, unknown odor inside the home.  The resident was planning to wait until the morning to call but with the odor getting worse, decided to call 911 during the night.

Upon our arrival, KVFC responders used portable gas meters to measure the air quality and found the air contained over 500 parts per million (PPM) of carbon monoxide (CO) just inside the front door.  For reference, normal readings are below 10 PPM and anything above that are considered hazardous, so it was quickly realized that this was an extremely dangerous situation for the residents and their pets and the house was immediately evacuated.

In order to enter the home, firefighters donned self-contained breathing apparatus and immediately shut down the furnace (the likely culprit of the CO) and opened all the windows. Responders then used a high-velocity fan to flush the air in the house until normal air quality readings were achieved.  The resident, who was experiencing symptoms of CO exposure (general sickness, dizziness, headache), was treated and transported by the KAA to a nearby medical facility for treatment.  Unfortunately, there were no CO detectors in the residence which would have alerted the occupants early on to this potentially deadly situation.

Carbon monoxide detector

Although CO alone is a colorless, odorless gas, in many cases it is mixed with other products of combustion like from a furnace that have an odor. However, the odor is not always detectable and given that this was the third incident involving a suspicious odor in town over the past week and by far the most serious, the KVFC is reminding residents that just as all homes should have functioning smoke detectors, they should also have at least one CO detector on each floor. Carbon monoxide detectors can be purchased at any home improvement stores or online.

If you are unable to find or to afford a CO detector, please email or call(860) 663-1785 and leave a message and the KVFC will bring one to you.

Though deadly, CO poisoning is a preventable emergency and the KVFC wants to ensure our residents are safe and prepared.

Photo provided by KVFC.

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