Fire officials warn residents of carbon monoxide dangers - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Fire officials warn residents of carbon monoxide dangers

As temperatures continue to drop to dangerous lows, many tend to turn to different ways to heat their homes.

Whether it's through generators or stoves, fire officials are informing residents about how to stay warm while staying safe.

They're warning resident to be aware of the possible dangers with carbon monoxide while trying to stay warm.

"It's odorless, tasteless and all of that. You're never going to know before it's too late," said Springfield Fire Marshal Capt. Daniel Rivera.

It's for those reasons Rivera is sending out a message to residents about carbon monoxide safety.

"People using alternative sources to heating their home, and any fossil fuel burning equipment in the home, can generate carbon monoxide," said Rivera.

Rivera said safety first starts with your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

"Especially at this time of year, if you have hard-wire detectors, make sure you have batteries. If you have power outages and storms like tonight, you're going to need batteries until the power is restored," continued Rivera.

The most common reason for carbon monoxide calls to come into the department is improper usage of a generator.

"Never bring the generator inside the house. And if you do use one, it should be outside and away from doors and windows," explained Rivera.

He said this way you'll prevent any gases from entering your home.

And be sure to clear snow from furnace and dryer vents. Keep outside furnace, hot water and dryer vents clear of drifting snow, to prevent gases from backing up into the home and creating a carbon monoxide hazard.

Rivera said it all comes down to common sense, and to think twice when using any heating device.

"Use caution. Don't do anything unknowing this time of year. People tend to get desperate for heat bringing in gas propane tanks for grills, and things of that nature, and trying to heat that way, but it doesn't pay in the end," said Rivera.

Copyright 2014 WSHM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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