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CO kills sisters

Bryan_16
Bryan_16 Member Posts: 262
holding someone accountable for this tragedy. IMHO the sisters were responsible. Common sense has been replaced by labels and warnings. I will end my part of this disscussion this way, you can't fix stupid. Bryan
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Comments

  • John R. Hall
    John R. Hall Member Posts: 2,246
    The tragedies continue

    "WAYNE TWP. — Two sisters — ages 25 and 29 — died from carbon monoxide that filled a home on Chenoweth Road Saturday.

    They were checking a generator in the basement about noon and were in the home only a matter of minutes before they passed out, officials said."

    Time to start holding SOMEONE accountable, from the manufacturer of the generator to the person at the Big Box checkout to the "friend" who loaned the victims the killer equipment. We already know that people will ignore warnings or not read instructions -- or they just plain don't know.

    All fuel-operated generators should have permanent bright orange warning labels on them about the dangers of running the equipment in unvented spaces. It's time to take this to another level. PERIOD.

  • Bryan_16
    Bryan_16 Member Posts: 262
    Seems to me

    that the two people most accountable {2 sisters} have already been punished. The mfg, sales person or neighbor isn't on the hook here. You can't fix stupid. Bryan
  • Roland_13
    Roland_13 Member Posts: 18
    CO Deaths

    How about a device which snifs the engine intake air for CO and shuts down the ignition system when it exceeds a pre-determined level for x-number of minutes?
  • John R. Hall
    John R. Hall Member Posts: 2,246
    Bryan

    So it is okay if no one warns people about the dangers of operating the equipment in unvented spaces? No one is accountable besides the victims? Come on, it is called a moral responsibility and it is time people own up to it.
  • Jim Davis_3
    Jim Davis_3 Member Posts: 578


    Probably would keep shutting it down even if it was outdoors. Weren't FVIR water heaters mandated to address stupid!!! I have know problem with gene pool correction.
  • John R. Hall
    John R. Hall Member Posts: 2,246
    Jim

    While you know I respect your opinion and knowledge, I have to say that the husbands and children of the victims would not like your reference to gene pool correction. I see the humor in a lot of things but not this.
  • Jim Davis_3
    Jim Davis_3 Member Posts: 578


    I was just quoting industry standards. Seems to be no requirements or laws that mandate equipment is safety tested. Many code forbide it!! This summer thousands of consumers will be poisoned from water heaters and yet very few will be checked because we only use our analyzer in the winter. 9 out of 10 contractors I ask if they sell CO alarms of any type they say no the customer needs to get their own. I figure if I can't scare that crap out of people I might as well piss them off.
  • Craig R Bergman
    Craig R Bergman Member Posts: 101
    What I find humorous

    is you wanting to punish those NOT responsible. If I take my gun and kill someone, I am responsible. PERIOD!! If I drive drunk and kill someone, I am responsible. PERIOD!! If I spill hot coffee in my lap, I am responsible. PERIOD!!
    If I fire up a generator inside, I AM RESPONSIBLE. PERIOD!!

    It's like the man siad...You can't fix stupid! No product is idiot proof. There will ALWAYS be those capable of harming themselves with their stupidity. The sad part is they often harm others at the same time.

    Bergy
  • Craig R Bergman
    Craig R Bergman Member Posts: 101
    We do not

    sell CO detectors. With as much as 25% not working right from the box, we don't want the liability! I always educate them about CO and the need to have an alarm.

    Bergy

    P.S. If an alarm doesn't work...THEN they are responsible.
    Selling a product that doesn't do what it is intended to do makes them liable.
  • John R. Hall
    John R. Hall Member Posts: 2,246
    Craig

    You are preaching to the choir, especially at this forum. We are all ultimately responsible for our own actions.

    Why do you think people who sue tobacco companies never win? Because the tobacco companies post warnings on their cigarette packages and wash their hands of any liability. Fair enough. I think the world is whacko with its litigious culture that anyone can sue anyone else for any reason.

    I did not say that others need to be punished for the actions of the victims. I did say they are accountable and in some cases, liable for not providing adequate and often MANDATED safety warnings.

    Saying that we are all responsible for our actions is true but it is the ultimate cop-out. For those affected by such a tragedy, especially the husband and three kids under the age of six, it is the ultimate slap in the face to soley blame the mother.
  • Jim Davis_3
    Jim Davis_3 Member Posts: 578


    Actually there are two dependable Low CO Monitors that are only available to contractors to sell and actually prevent even low level poisonings. Store Alarms that go off at 70ppm barely prevent death and yes many are bad from the start. Certainly have been a few recalls recently.

    I did just read about a new one you can carry on your key chain but unfortunately it goes off a 125ppm. I think you could pretty much be out of it by that time.

    Check out NSI3000 and CO Experts.

    Our customers safety should be our responsibility! Insurance companies and lawyers do.
  • Jon S._2
    Jon S._2 Member Posts: 4


    Who runs a gas-powered generator inside a house? Should we start putting warning labels on lawn mowers? Hey, you never know....
  • Craig R Bergman
    Craig R Bergman Member Posts: 101
    John

    > You are preaching to the choir, especially at

    > this forum. We are all ultimately responsible for

    > our own actions.

    >

    > Why do you think people who

    > sue tobacco companies never win? Because the

    > tobacco companies post warnings on their

    > cigarette packages and wash their hands of any

    > liability. Fair enough. I think the world is

    > whacko with its litigious culture that anyone can

    > sue anyone else for any reason.

    >

    > I did not say

    > that others need to be punished for the actions

    > of the victims. I did say they are accountable

    > and in some cases, liable for not providing

    > adequate and often MANDATED safety

    > warnings.

    >

    > Saying that we are all responsible

    > for our actions is true but it is the ultimate

    > cop-out. For those affected by such a tragedy,

    > especially the husband and three kids under the

    > age of six, it is the ultimate slap in the face

    > to soley blame the mother.



    You said it yourself...

    "We already know that people will ignore warnings or not read instructions -- or they just plain don't know.

    All fuel-operated generators should have permanent bright orange warning labels on them about the dangers of running the equipment in unvented spaces."

    All the lables in the world will not fix stupid or ignorance.
  • John R. Hall
    John R. Hall Member Posts: 2,246
    Jon

    You or I and most folks at The Wall wouldn't run the generator in the house. But you have to take off the biased bifocals and look at the general public. They don't know what we know and maybe we should do a better job of educating/warning them.

    I'll get off my soapbox -- for now.
  • Jim Davis_3
    Jim Davis_3 Member Posts: 578


    I think there has been at least 10 generator poisonings in May that I have read. In several cases they were outdoors at campgrounds and the fumes came back in to campers. In the house, in the garage or outdoors they are like leaving you car engine running. I would say they shouldn't be installed within 10ft of any possible opening into a building. This may be one time where a code could address a safety issue, like thats ever going to happen!
  • Craig R Bergman
    Craig R Bergman Member Posts: 101
    John

    You said it yourself...

    "We already know that people will ignore warnings or not read instructions -- or they just plain don't know.

    All fuel-operated generators should have permanent bright orange warning labels on them about the dangers of running the equipment in unvented spaces."

    All the lables in the world will not fix stupid or ignorance. Would these young ladies have started a fire inside to keep warm? Would they leave their car running in the garage? They would not, they know that would kill them. Don't misunderstand me...Those left behind are in my prayers, especially the children. No child should have to grow up without one of their parents. But it can not be a cop-out to say those responsible are just that, responsible.

    God Forbid...My wife may well find herself in a bad situation one day.
    She REFUSES to read a manual. Not even enough to find out the basics of how the equipment works, let alone what DANGERS may be present! It is that kind of "stupid" that can not be fixed and should not be rewarded!!

    Bergy
  • Mark Hunt_6
    Mark Hunt_6 Member Posts: 147
    It happens that quick

    Gas generators could be listed as WMD's.

    Manufacturers of generators do warn people NOT to use them indoors. But you have to read ALL of the instructions to get the message. And we all know how often instructions are read AND followed.

    Even then, people will put a generator in an attached garage and run an extension cord into the house through the door to the garage. The door stays open enough for the cord and CO comes through the door. The occupants die.

    Or....they put the generator outside and run the cord through a window that stays slightly open. CO comes through the window and the occupants die.

    In case you're wondering, both of the scenarios I just mentioned have happened. I couldn't make this up if I tried.

    CO alarms SHOULD be able to prevent some of these deaths, I said SHOULD. It has been my experience that the level of ignorance about CO is only exceeded by the level of ignorance about CO alarms. Sad but true.

    Unfortunately, the reaction to CO related deaths remains the same. Adjectives like "sad", "unfortunate" and "tragic" make it into every story. Well what about "PREVENTABLE" or "AVOIDABLE"?? Never see it. CO deaths are accepted as almost normal. Let someone get killed by a shark, it makes the front page with bold lettering. CO death??? Page 11. Maybe.

    I still get angry when I read these stories.

    Mark H

  • Paul Fredricks_6
    Paul Fredricks_6 Member Posts: 88


    Do we know that they were not warned? Do we know where the generator came from?

    Yeah, there should be some instructions given. Maybe it should be law that any potentially dangerous item requires instructions for it's use. But does that mean verbal? Or a book explaining the proper use, which I'm sure came with the generator. 25 and 29? I guess it is possible they had no idea that this was a dangerous situation. May have been an old unit and the warnings, if they were ever there, may have been warn away. Who can you blame for that.

    Stuff like this will always happen no matter what we do. I'm sure the lawyers will be the winners.
  • Bryan_16
    Bryan_16 Member Posts: 262
    not so quick, John

    I stirred this pot once, here goes again. You are adamant that so one should own up to the responsibility. I am a born and bred country boy, we call it common sense. You don't p--s into the wind, don't step in a fresh cow pie don't run an engine indoors. It is all pretty simple. Yes, people need to be educated, but you cannot protect them from themselves. Bryan
  • John R. Hall
    John R. Hall Member Posts: 2,246
    I don't mind stirring the pot, either

    It doesn't matter that you are a country boy as much as it doesn't matter that I am a city slicker. Do we turn our backs on people because they display a lack of common sense? C'mon, there is also an old saying that "we are our brother's keeper." Look at the big picture and not just one from atop a cow pattie.
  • Jim Davis_3
    Jim Davis_3 Member Posts: 578


    In reality it isn't the sisters fault they got CO poisoned. I doubt either was an expert on sump pumps and somebody else told them they needed a generator to keep it running. Obviously the person that sold them the generator did nothing to warn them of the dangers. Maybe they started it up or someone else did? There was no CO alarm in the house because it is not required in Ohio because not enough people have died yet. Odds are neither sister was ever advised of the dangers of CO by anyone. Most contractors want to avoid the discussion because they are afraid of it and the liability. I would think by now utilities would know when they turn of the power people go out and by generators.

    How many homes have a gas oven and yet no contractor has ever check it or warned their customers of the hazards?? Well they put those gas logs in themselves so I am not going to check them. Plus I don't know how to fix them anyway.

    In thiw case I hope the person or persons responsible will be held liable. Would be pretty sad if one of their own relatives hooked up the generator for them!!.

    John you know I agree with you and how long I have been frustrated with this stuff.

  • John R. Hall
    John R. Hall Member Posts: 2,246
    I agree my friend

    I think everyone can agree that we shouldn't just sit on our hands. I am taking steps to identify the generator in this story and how the homeowner got it. Maybe getting the whole story could be something others can rally around -- and get the attention of the general media.
  • Terry Trommeshauser
    Terry Trommeshauser Member Posts: 34


    Generators at a campsite... go figure.
    I'm amazed how humans have a need to go "homeless" for a weekend (ie camping), yet still need hook up a radio or TV, etc. I could never quite figure this one out.

    Sorry to hear about the Sisters. But I have to agree with the majority that stupid can not be fixed and as Humans.. we are ALL stupid to some degree.





  • Ericjeeper
    Ericjeeper Member Posts: 179
    Kind of like a warning on a lwanmower deck

    Is it really needed? Hello Of course the things under there are sharp and obviously moving..But yet there is still a warning label telling you not to stick your hands under there..People do it anyways,.,.
  • Leo_10
    Leo_10 Member Posts: 22
    How Many times I have seen

    I don't know how many times I have seen heating contractors (professionals?) working with oil fired salamandor heaters or portable propane heaters venting into the structure. If people in a trade that deals with CO aren't careful how do you expect lay peole to be.?

    In the late 50's at 5 years old I was taught about CO by my very nonmechanical Dad. As well as keep hands and feet away from a lawn mower. Mom taught me to stay away from a hot iron which you always unplugged when done and to keep fingers away from the wringer on the washer. Today irons shut off, wringers are gone and lawnmowers have safeties. Guess I don't have to remember what all I was taught.

    We don't know the full circumstances of the death of these two people.

    Leo
  • The Boiler Dr.
    The Boiler Dr. Member Posts: 163
    CO and stupidity

    You are all correct about stupidity.
    Averted a potential tragedy last Thursday. A plumber and his apprentice decided to use a small gas powered generator to provide power for their trouble lights while working in a saturated crawlspace under a three story apartment building. I heard this "buzzing" sound coming thru the floor and went to investigate. My personal CO alarm activated before I even got to the opening.
    I could hear the 2 fools were coughing and complaining about headaches from the "sewer gas" but I could not see them and they did not answer my calls. Very Good confined entry planning!!! They were right pissed when I shut off and removed the generator!!!
    Since they saw fit to chew me a new one because they had to crawl about a hundred feet in the dark I tried to make them aware they were lucky to "see dark"!
    The best part ... NO ONE KNEW they were in the crawlspace!!
    Their supervisor was even more livid when I called him to to apprise him of their brilliant plan.

    Talk about a requirement for gene pool correction!

    Thanks to you Jim, and your most recent seminar ... I might leave my cell or PDA behind but I DO NOT LEAVE HOME WITHOUT MY PPD stapped to my belt!!
  • Jeff Elston_2
    Jeff Elston_2 Member Posts: 20


    My buddy bought a window shaker AC unit and installed it in his living room window. It was a very large unit. He did not do it right duh and the condensate was running into the house. Anyway he drilled his own drain hole in the panning of the unit outside while it was running. Anyway thats when he called me. And it was to late. He drilled into the fan blade path, broke the fan. He purchased a second unit the next day. People do things!

    I feel as though there are not enough warnings about CO people just don't understand. There needs to be more than we have now. We all know not to drive drunk. A propaganda campaign could do wonders it seems.

    I found this the other day people just open a window and think it will be alright. Sorry about the cell phone pic. These are 2 -120 gallon stand up DHW heaters running like this. The laundry facilities are in the same room.
  • Jim Davis_3
    Jim Davis_3 Member Posts: 578
    Two deaths averted

    Wow! Saved two lives and they may never appreciate it. But the reward of knowing what you accomplished will be with you forever and it is something that you can take with you beyond the grave.

    I know of many cases where homeowners had their furnaces shutdown because they were unsafe and had the same ungrateful attitude. Yes, we have to protect stupid and some days it is harder than others.

    Great job!!!
  • Joannie_15
    Joannie_15 Member Posts: 115
    Education


    Every year for the past 20 years or so, there have been repeated Public Service Announcements, news stories and warnings aired and written about this. AND about using gas stoves and gas grills inside to keep warm when there is a power outage. Is it just my area, or are these things aired this much everywhere?

    It IS extremely sad that these people have died, but I'm having a hard time believing that people don't know about this stuff. I wonder if the "it won't happen to me" sentiment contributes to this kind of thing? I know if I do something stupid when I drive, and when I see that someone has died from the SAME move, I wonder if I really learn from that.
  • Heather_5
    Heather_5 Member Posts: 39
    How far does it go, though...

    I'm on the fence with this, honestly. As your standard, everyday consumer, I have no extensive knowledge of most technical trades or what results from the use of mechanical equipment. But I know that anything that runs off gas or oil will create fumes that are probably not good for me. A natural train of thought would lead me to the conclusion that I probably shouldn't use that equipment in an area with little or no venting.

    I think there's a lot to be said for "common sense". We give people a lot of tools to make decisions that will keep them safe. We can only do so much. For example, we're taught from a young age that heat=pain, generally speaking. Do we really need a warning on a coffee cup, a curling iron, or a stove that we might get burnt?

    I agree with the majority that people need to take more accountability for themselves. I think by making excuses for a lack of knowledge we are inevitably encouraging people to avoid gaining any semblance of common sense. I think by encouraging law suits and pointing the finger, we're creating a large society of ignorant self-harming slobs. I don't mean that as angry or as hostile as it sounds.

    Ultimately, if we want situations like this to decrease in frequency, if we want people to stay safe, if we want to avoid unnecessary and preventable deaths...well...then we need to start teaching people. Stop being reactive and start being proactive. Warning labels have never worked consistently to avoid liability when somebody does something stupid and gets hurt.
  • Larry (from OSHA)
    Larry (from OSHA) Member Posts: 691
    common sense

    I've tried to stay out of this one for a variety of my own reasons, but since the concept of "common sense" has been tossed in a number of times, my two cents worth follows.

    Common sense. What is it? How do you define it? Do we all have it? Is yours the same as mine? Or the same as the person who does something that defies your logic or my logic?

    I actually gave up on common sense several years ago. I have seen so many different ways for seemingly normal people to maim or kill themselves, I have come to the conclusion that common sense isn't so common.

    Why would someone dig a hole in the ground the same dimensions as a grave and then just get in? The answers range from: That's where the pipes are, and We've always done it this way for 20 years and nothings happened yet, to Yeah, I knew it wasn't right, but we didn't have a trench box. Every year in Minnesota at least one person dies in a trench. The numbers are similar across the country.

    How about working 30 feet above the ground without any type of fall protection?

    Or sticking your arm up to your elbow into a punch press while it's running? And then losing it.

    Or run a propane heater in a building being framed and nicely poly wrapped without a C.O. monitor. That happens a lot. Sometimes a whole bunch of guys end up in the hospital.


    The list continues to grow. And I stopped being surprised by much of anything. From my perspective, common sense does not exist.

    Larry
  • Ken D.
    Ken D. Member Posts: 836
    CO

    This is the problem with Do-It-Yourselfers. Anyone can, weather or not they know the dangers. I would hope a pro would advise them of all hazards. The teenager at the home center won't know the difference.
  • Ken D.
    Ken D. Member Posts: 836
    Crawlspace

    Good call, Boiler guy. Maybe someday those guys will see you as the hero. It is all hard to understand sometimes.
  • Steamhead (in transit)
    Steamhead (in transit) Member Posts: 6,688
    In that case

    the ones who should be removed from the gene pool won't be there when the CO levels get too high!

    Talk about S-T-U-P-I-D!

    Jeff, I hope you shut those heaters down.....

    To Learn More About This Professional, Click Here to Visit Their Ad in "Find A Professional"
  • Maine Ken
    Maine Ken Member Posts: 531


    If common sense were so common, then everyone would have it!

    To Learn More About This Professional, Click Here to Visit Their Ad in "Find A Professional"
  • John R. Hall
    John R. Hall Member Posts: 2,246
    The debate will always go on

    Common sense and accountability is a debate that can continue "ad nauseum." But you can bet that when someone of prominence dies from CO poisoning, the general media will hop on the story like flies on stink. And that, my friends, stinks.
  • Bob Harper
    Bob Harper Member Posts: 882
    CO incidents

    I treated a lot of CO poisonings in my years as a paramedic. The two largest causes not related to fire deaths were combustion for heating and gasoline powered equipment inside buildings. Of the gasoline engines used indoors, all but one were contractors running diamond saws on concrete slabs or generators. However, later, when I used to install fireplaces in new construction, the crews used to place their gasoline powered compressors and generators in the garage thinking that could keep the exhaust out of the house. I would routinely shut them down when I measured >50ppm in the home. Crews would work in these conditions day in and day out. The builders placed LP salamanders indoors to dry the drywall mud even though these units are not approved for indoor use and do not have ODS pilots (not that ODS pilots are that effective).

    I ran two calls where the gas oven was used for heat when the furnace kicked out. A lot of people got a ride in the hyperbaric oxygen chamber.

    We, as a society do a lousy job of educating ourselves on simple hazards of life. I shake my head that kids will pay $48K/ yr tuition for college yet they still don't know basic CPR or first aid. I shook my head at millionaires who stuffed so many pillows under the head of granny to make her comfortable, they blocked her airway and they killed her brain cells more than the original illness. The lengths people will go to kill themselves never ceases to amaze me. The problem is, they often take down others.

    We need a more coordinated effort at the national level. Where are the TV stations doing a series on the need for professional installations, inspections, performance testing, and CO & fire hazards? There is only so much each of us can do singly but collectively, we hold much greater power. I am involved with educating AHJs on inspecting fireplaces and venting of combustion appliances. They are shocked at what they miss and what is going on behind them. However, it is getting traction and we are slowly making a difference. Just like the stories on this forum, a few knowledgeable people can save lives just like paramedics, only by preventative medicine.

    Bob
  • Jeff Elston_2
    Jeff Elston_2 Member Posts: 20
    Uhh, Yess I did

    Turned both gas cocks and called the property manager!
  • Evil lution
    Evil lution Member Posts: 14
    Darwin Awards Anyone

    Maybe people should take a class or even better apply for a permit. The state could make some money and people might get educated. At least have the buyer read the operating instructions and have the selling company test them. Or maybe have the buyer sign a legal release form acknowledging the hazards of operatiing a generator. It dosen't matter we would still see them on the Darwin Awards.
  • Mitch_4
    Mitch_4 Member Posts: 955
    Do you have a bright ornage label on your

    windhield that can only be removed if you NEVER park ina garage, and if you do not is your auto's ignition system hard wired to operate only if the door is open?

    In my area it is against the law to have gasoline in the living areas of a home..garage ok, living space..no.

    What if they filled the tank and the fumes lit and exploded from the water heater..where to now?

    the generator company? the water heater comany? hte house builder? how about EXXON? hell the saudi's pumped it out first..

    you can't fix stupid. Hell..look at any IOM there days..get rid of the warnings, legal crap and the IOM would only be 10-12 pages..the rest is PYA..I have the origianl manual for my furnace that was in my house 35 yr old unit..it is 8 pages...8!!!

    The manuals are here to be read, and the first thing you see, and it says INVARIABLY" read these instructions COMPLETELY before using"

    Sorry..Generator company not at fault. Not my fault is the lawyers bread and butter..

    Sorry my friend..but get real...
This discussion has been closed.