Posted by: Salvatore J. Zambri, founding member and partner
Deaths caused by carbon monoxide poisoning are preventable tragedies. In fact, according to a recent Forbes article, twenty-five states now require that residents have a carbon monoxide alarm in their home. The Lauren Project, a non-proft organization for carbon monoxide awareness, follows legislation for each state and includes a detailed legislation map of the United States at their website.
According to the Centers for for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), tens of thousands of people are poisoned and hundreds die each year from accidentally breathing carbon monoxide. Since carbon monoxide is colorless, odorless and tasteless, victims usually are not aware of what is happening. Symptoms of CO poisoning are frequently mistaken for the flu. Those symptoms include “headache, dizziness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, chest pain, and confusion.”
Listed below is common-sense advice from the CDC for prevention of carbon monoxide poisoning:
Important CO Poisoning Prevention Tips
- “Never use a gas range or oven to heat a home.
- Never leave the motor running in a vehicle parked in an enclosed or partially enclosed space, such as a garage.
- Never run a motor vehicle, generator, pressure washer, or any gasoline-powered engine outside an open window, door, or vent where exhaust can vent into an enclosed area.
- Never run a generator, pressure washer, or any gasoline-powered engine inside a basement, garage, or other enclosed structure, even if the doors or windows are open, unless the equipment is professionally installed and vented. Keep vents and flues free of debris, especially if winds are high. Flying debris can block ventilation lines.
- Never use a charcoal grill, hibachi, lantern, or portable camping stove inside a home, tent, or camper.
- If conditions are too hot or too cold, seek shelter with friends or at a community shelter.
- If CO poisoning is suspected, consult a health care professional right away.”
Many people mistakenly believe that the smoke detector in their home protects them from carbon monoxide poisoning also. Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms are not the same. If your home does not already have a functional carbon monoxide alarm, a wise investment is readily available at hardware stores. Please be safe.
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About the author:
Mr. Zambri is a board-certified civil trial attorney by the National Board of Trial Advocates and a Past-President of the Trial Lawyers Association of Metropolitan Washington, D.C. The association recently named him “Trial Lawyer of the Year” (2011). He has been rated by Washingtonian magazine as a “Big Gun” and among the “top 1%” of all lawyers in the Washington metropolitan area. The magazine also describes him as “one of Washington’s best–most honest and effective lawyers” who specializes in personal injury matters, including automobile accident claims, premises liability, product liability, medical malpractice, and work-accident claims. He has successfully litigated multiple cases against truck and bus companies, the Washington Metropolitan Area transit Authority, and other automobile owners. His law firm, in fact, has obtained the largest settlement ever in a personal injury case involving WMATA. Mr. Zambri has also been acknowledged as one of “The Best Lawyers in America” by Best Lawyers (2013 edition) and has been repeatedly named a “Super Lawyer” by Super Lawyer magazine (March/April 2013)– national publications that honor the top lawyers in America.