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So close it's not funny, this time CO detectors really saved lives.

GBartGBart Posts: 132Member
In Thornton, New Hampshire six people went to the hospital due to CO poisoning, they woke to the alarm and then......


  • GBartGBart Posts: 132Member
    "Authorities said that at around 5 a.m. a resident awoke to the sound of the CO alarm, but was quickly overcome by the gas luckily several people were able to quickly call 911.

    A state trooper was the first on scene and found two victims right by the front door. The trooper acted quickly opening all the doors and windows to ventilate the home which had deadly levels of carbon monoxide."

    Two men, a woman and three children all within seconds of hearing the alarm start to go down, sounds like a catastrophic failure of some sort but I have not been able to find a follow up story as to the actual cause.

  • NY_RobNY_Rob Posts: 928Member
    Some more info on it here....

    After residents were evacuated the FD found "pockets" of CO as high as 700ppm inside the home.
  • GBartGBart Posts: 132Member
    edited April 11
    Yeah, bear in mind those fire dept tests were done after the state police opened the doors and windows, and we don't know how long after, @700ppm you have headache, nausea, and dizziness after 45 minutes; collapse and unconsciousness after 1 hour of exposure, death within 2-3 hours.

    My guess is around the time they woke up from the alarm and tried to make the door they were in the 10,000ppm range which can give immediate unconsciousness and death within minutes.

    The trooper is actually very lucky, he could have gone down as well, it's happened.
  • captaincocaptainco Posts: 371Member
    Saved their lives but it would have been much better if it had gone off before they were exposed to life threatening levels. This time they just conscience enough to make a call. What if they went off before you got sick? Then you would be wasting a call to 911 or at least that was the reasoning for the higher levels of alarms today.
  • Jean-David BeyerJean-David Beyer Posts: 2,543Member
    When the power went off for 6 1/2 days after storm Sandy, my heat was off too. My house is quite well insulated, but the temperature got below 60F after a few days. I lit six or eight fat candles and closed the bedroom door. They actually raised the room temperature by about 2F after an hour or so, but my fancy Aeromedix COexperts CO detector went off from the candles at 10ppm.

    I did not know that candles produced significant levels of CO (CO2 I could expect). I do not suppose the gasoline powered generator from the house across the street generated enough CO to cross the street, infiltrate my house, and set off the detector. In any case, I blew out several of the candles and the CO detector quieted down.
  • GBartGBart Posts: 132Member
    edited April 12
    Most CO detectors are cumulative, they can go off after long periods of low levels or a sudden spike, without an accurate digital read out that displays current levels you really have no idea what you have going on.

    That's why when we respond to most alarms we find nothing.

    Anything that has a yellow flame like a candle generally has high CO, not always but usually, especially LP or NG and all of our fuel burners should have a suspended flame that touches nothing.
  • captaincocaptainco Posts: 371Member
    Not true. UL testing does not allow Alarms to go off below 30 ppm whatsoever or at that levels for at least 30 days continuous.

    Also high spikes are tested and will fail UL testing.

    Digitals can't read until they hit 30 ppm which is also stupid. CO between 5 ppm and 30 ppm can have major affects on the young and the old, persons with heart problems or respiratory problems.

    Only First Alert with the biometric (spelling) is cumulative but still restricted to the levels above.

    When I investigate CO issues my concern is not what is in the air when get there other than personal safety, but eliminating all the sources that could have produced it intermittently and make sure there aren't any. Too many are concerned what is there at the moment versus what might have been there before the place was ventilated versus what could have caused it.
  • Mad DogMad Dog Posts: 3,427Member
    Captain CO has spoken! Mad Dog
    To learn more about this professional, click here to visit their ad in Find A Contractor.
  • GBartGBart Posts: 132Member
    edited April 13

    CO detectors are cumulative.

    In fact CO IS a cumulative poison.

    When I say detectors I refer to battery powered cheapos, they are cumulative and will go off after long periods of low exposure, professional hard wired alarms especially with a digital read out are not cumulative but you need to check the product info to be absolutely sure. Typically they will list it as a purge and reset model. They purge themselves of acquired low levels of CO and begin again at 0ppm.
  • SuperTechSuperTech Posts: 345Member
    I always encourage my customers to have several low level CO detectors installed. Powered with battery backup is preferred. And I try to remind them to replace detectors when they get older.

    CO safety is my number one priority when I service a heating system. I try to learn everything I can to make the systems safe.
  • captaincocaptainco Posts: 371Member
    Not sure what you mean by cumulative? If there is 30 ppm in a room for 1 hour or 12 hours the highest the alarm will register is 30 ppm.

    If a person is in a room at 30 ppm for 1 hour or 12 hours the most they have in their blood is 30 ppm. The damage over time is cumulative but only at the maximum levels they are exposed.
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