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Thursday, January 27, 2011

Couple Overcome by CO From Generator Inside Home

MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930, mebrady@co.pg.md.us

A Fairmount Heights couple has been transported to a hospital suffering from exposure to Carbon Monoxide (CO).  At about 10:00 am today a 911 call was received from a home in the 1300 block of Doewood Lane.  The exact nature of the emergency could not be determined from the calling party.  Public Safety Communications dispatched police and Fire/EMS to check on the welfare of the residence.  When units arrived on the scene it was quickly determined that the male and female occupants, both in their mid 50's, were suffering from carbon monoxide exposure.  The female was found unconscious and the male was disoriented with both displaying signs and symptoms of CO poisoning.

The home was without power from the Winter Storm on Wednesday and the couple had a gasoline powered generator operating inside the home to power electric appliances.  The CO built up quickly and soon sickened the couple.  Paramedics treated the patients on the scene and transported them to an area hospital.

This incident is a potentially tragic reminder to never use a generator inside of a home.

This small gasoline powered generator was found operating inside of the home on Doewood Lane. (Thomas James)

 Using Portable Generators Safely


• The primary hazards to avoid when using a generator are carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning from the toxic engine exhaust, electric shock or electrocution, and fire. Follow the directions supplied with the generator. Every year, people die in incidents related to portable generator use.

• Under no circumstances should portable generators be used indoors, including inside a garage, carport, basement, crawlspace, or other enclosed or partially-enclosed area, even with ventilation.

• Be sure to turn the generator off and let it cool down before refueling. Gasoline spilled on hot engine parts could ignite.

• Store fuel for the generator in an approved safety can.

• Be sure to turn the generator off and let it cool down before refueling. Gasoline spilled on hot engine parts could ignite.

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