Safety Tip of the Week – Carbon Monoxide: The Invisible Killer

Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas that often goes undetected, striking victims caught off guard or in their sleep.

Sources of Carbon Monoxide:

  •   Running a “jumping jack” in a trench;
  •   Saw cutting or pressure washing indoors;
  •   Confined spaces along heavily traveled roads;
  •   Burning wood, paper, or plastic products;
  •   Welding when carbon dioxide shielding gas is used;
  •   Propane space heaters; and
  •   Forklifts indoors.

Preventing Carbon Monoxide Exposure:

  •   Never use a generator indoors or in enclosed or partially enclosed spaces such as garages, crawl spaces, and basements.
  • Opening windows and doors in an enclosed space may prevent CO buildup.
  • Make sure the generator has 3-4 feet of clear space on all sides and above it to ensure adequate ventilation.
  • Do not use a generator outdoors if placed near doors, windows, or vents which could allow CO to enter and build up in occupied spaces.
  • When using space heaters and stoves ensure that they are in good working order to reduce CO buildup, and never use in enclosed spaces or indoors.
  • Consider using tools powered by electricity or compressed air, if available.
  • Look for signs and symptoms in workers (shortness of breath, nausea, headaches and dizziness). 
Download flyer: STOTW_745_Carbon Monoxide_The Invisible Killer
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