Home is where we tend to feel safest, but becoming too comfortable and familiar with our environment can unfortunately be fatal. In the UK, carbon monoxide poisoning (CO poisoning) in the home accounts for roughly 50 deaths per year, as well as 4,000 medical visits.
An independent study by Electrical Safety First found that in fact the most dangerous time to be at home is on a Saturday at 6:30 pm: just when you feel at your most relaxed.
There are multiple reasons for CO poisoning that are explained here.
Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide poisoning
So what are the causes of these fatalities in the place where we should feel safest?
The simple answer is that people underestimate the dangers of carbon monoxide and do not recognise the symptoms which include:
- Loss of consciousness
Carbon monoxide is a very conspicuous enemy. It has come to be nicknamed ‘the silent killer’ for a variety of reasons: colourless, odourless and tasteless, there are few warning signs that your home and lives could be at risk.
Above all other products, these life-saving devices have to be a priority when thinking about setting up your home fixtures.
Preventing Carbon Monoxide deaths with CO detectors
Take the story of Emma Jackson, whose father tragically died of CO poisoning on a business trip when she was a young girl.
It’s extremely important that there is an awareness of the signs of carbon monoxide poisoning…. if my story encourages just one person to get a carbon monoxide alarm it will have been worthwhile.
That is why having a working carbon monoxide detector in your home is absolutely essential: it really is your first and last line of defence against carbon monoxide poisoning. Roughly 250,000 homes are likely to experience dangerous levels of carbon monoxide rates.
There is a highly helpful Twitter campaign called ‘Press to Test’, which encourages people to test their carbon monoxide alarms on a regular basis.
Remember also that it is important to be able to instantly recognise the tone of your CO alarm, and the taking part in the ‘Press to Test’ campaign ensures you will.
However, first things first: have you got a quality carbon monoxide detector with potential life-saving abilities? Sparks sells the brilliant range of Aico monoxide detectors, which come with a variety of ranges and power sources, as well as battery back-ups.
For instance, the Aico Ei262 contains rechargeable lithium back-up cells that are designed to have a ten-year life span. They are capable of providing 4 weeks of CO operation without even having a mains power connection.
The Ei262 also includes a ‘RadioLink’ feature, which allows the alarm to be controlled remotely and furthermore to communicate with all other wireless CO, smoke and heat alarms in your home.
Carbon Monoxide isn’t the only killer: other dangers at home
It’s easy to get complacent at home. Haven’t most of us been guilty of overloading sockets to appliances that are still plugged in? When you take out your power tool for a bit of home DIY, is your first thought about ensuring you have proper Residual Current Device (RCD) protection?
Electrical fires caused by these mistakes are a major killer and should also be considered as seriously as Carbon Monoxide death prevention. We at Sparks sell a range of top-end RCD devices that can stop these easy-to-make mistakes disastrously fatal.
- Information on deaths and hospitalisation caused by carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning (via the Telegraph)
- Information on when carbon monoxide poisoning is most likely to happen and preventative measures (via Electrical Safety First)
- Social media efforts to raise awareness (via Twitter)
- Tips on preventing electrical fires (via Electrical Safety First)
- Explaining home-based electrical deaths (via Explain That Stuff)