BATON ROUGE, La (BRPROUD)- According to Louisiana Department of Health syndromic surveillance, in the past week there have been 141 emergency department visits for carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning in Regions 1 (Greater New Orleans), 2 (Baton Rouge), 3 (River Parishes) and 9 (Northshore). Four individuals in Louisiana have died from carbon monoxide poisoning during and after Hurricane Ida.
Please use your portable or stand-by generator safely by following this immediate advice from the Office of the State Fire Marshal:
- Place generators at least 20 feet away from your home.
- Look for any air entry points into the home near your unit and ensure that those are properly closed and sealed off, such as windows or doors, air intakes, nearby dryer vents or crawl spaces.
- Have a CO alarm.
- Give these generators breaks that allow for any concentrated exhaust to clear away from the area.
- Open your windows and doors during this break to air out any concentration that may have collected in your home.
- Check the manufacturing specs to verify the installation meets those specs.
- If there’s a concern that the installation standards were not met, get an appropriate party, like the installer, out to inspect it.
- Ensure your generator is being appropriately maintained, including the oil change frequency requirements.
The most common symptoms of CO poisoning are headache, dizziness, weakness, upset stomach, vomiting, chest pain and confusion. CO symptoms are often described as “flu-like.” If you breathe in a lot of CO it can make you pass out or kill you. People who are sleeping or drunk can die from CO poisoning before they have symptoms.