8 deaths following Hurricane Laura tied to carbon monoxide poisoning from portable generators

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LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) Eight people have recently died due to carbon monoxide poisoning from generator use in the aftermath of Hurricane Laura.

Generators can be a big help during natural disasters, but if you don’t know what you’re doing they can be deadly.

News Tens Danielle Johnson is live from the Lafayette Fire Department with tips from experts on how to properly use and store your generator.

“Of course with the hurricane, there are a lot of people using them but the one thing you have to make sure to do, is use them with caution.

Running a generator inside or too close to your home can put your entire family in danger.

Alton Trahan, Public Information Officer with the Lafayette Fire Department says generators should be placed at least 5 to 10 feet away from any opening.

“You never want to have your generator inside or in the garage because that’s where the gas can build up. We know that anytime there is a build up there is danger of carbon monoxide.

When running your generator, Trahan says its best to use heavy duty equipment to prevent fires.

“Make sure that you use heavy duty extension cords. You don’t want to use any lite weight extension cord that’s very inexpensive because that’s the ones that have the tendency to short out and catch on fire.”

He added:

“Make sure your generator is turned off and give it sometime to cool off as well before you fill it back up.” Trahan said.

“In case you have any spill of gas or anything, make sure you wipe up the area before you start the generator back up. You also want to store your fuel cans away from any generator that’s operating.

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