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    Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

    Every year in the United States, hundreds of people die of carbon monoxide poisoning and thousands more are hospitalized.

    Carbon monoxide is a gas that is produced when fossil fuels such as coal, natural gas and oil are burned. In only minutes, deadly fumes can develop in enclosed spaces. When you breathe carbon monoxide, it enters the bloodstream and cuts off delivery of oxygen to the body's organs and tissues.

    The first symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning may be headache, dizziness, confusion, fatigue, and nausea. As more of this gas is inhaled, it can cause unconsciousness, brain damage and even death. Read the information below to learn more about how to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning.


    The third annual report provides data on the 934 individuals unintentionally poisoned by carbon monoxide in 2011, including 22 who died from the exposure.  The three leading causes of exposure were: faulty furnaces or water heaters (23%%), generators (10.5%) and vehicles (10.3%).

    The second annual report
     provides data on the 986 individuals unintentionally poisoned by carbon monoxide in 2010, including 26 who died from the exposure.  The three leading causes of exposure were: faulty furnaces or water heaters (26%), fires (10%), and power machinery misplacement (7%).


    The first annual report on carbon monoxide poisoning surveillance provides information about the 39 deaths and 1,340 non-fatal carbon monoxide poisonings that occurred in Michigan in 2009. More than 60 percent occurred during the winter months, and happened most frequently at home. About 11% happened at work.


    Homes and Vehicles 

    image of a house

    Furnaces, cars, boats, kerosene heaters, charcoal grills, camp stoves, power washers, generators...anything that burns fuel produces carbon monoxide.  Learn how to stay safe at home and in your car by reading the information found below.

    Fact Sheets
    NEW!! Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention   

    Facts About Carbon Monoxide 

      Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning In Your Home or Apartment 

      Carbon Monoxide Detectors In Your Home or Apartment 

      Carbon Monoxide and Tractors

      Carbon Monoxide Brochure 

    For More Information 
    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    Carbon Monoxide Information in 16 Different Languages 
    Watch this video from the California Air Resources Board.

    Boats and Watercraft 

    boat Carbon monoxide is found in the exhaust from cars and boats. One boat engine can produce the same amount of carbon monoxide as 180 cars. Check out the Boating and Carbon Monoxide information found below to find out how you can stay safe while enjoying summer boating.

    Fact Sheet 
    Boating and Carbon Monoxide Poisoning 

    For More Information 
    Boat U.S.Foundation
    The Risk of Carbon Monoxide 

     Camping and Outdoors 

    tentBeing outdoors is a favorite pastime for many Michigan residents. You need to protect yourself and your family from the dangers of carbon monoxide given off by camping and other specialized equipment. The following fact sheets provide information on how to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning when you're enjoying the great outdoors.

    Fact Sheets 
    Camping and Carbon Monoxide 
    Ice Fishing and Carbon Monoxide 

    Portable Generators 
     gasoline-powered generator 
    Portable generators are popular with homeowners, boaters and campers in Michigan. Generators are very convenient but they can also be very dangerous.  For more information, read the Generators and Carbon Monoxide fact sheet found below.

    Fact Sheet 
    Portable Generators and Carbon Monoxide Poisoning 

    For More Information 
    U.S. Fire Administration
    Portable Generator Hazards 

    North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services
    Power Generators, Gas Grills and Charcoal Grills - Used Indoors- Can Cause Carbon Monoxide Poisoning 

    Texas Department of State Health Services
    Carbon Monoxide and Generators 

     In the Workplace 

    forklift image There are many jobs where workers can be exposed to dangerous levels of carbon monoxide. Fuel-powered equipment like power washers, compressors and cement saws can generate deadly levels of carbon monoxide. Fortunately, there are steps that you and your co-workers can take to keep yourself safe from carbon monoxide poisoning. Check out the workplace information found below.
    Fact Sheets   
    Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning at Work 
    Carbon Monoxide and Power Tools and Equipment 

    For More Information 
    Occupational Safety and Health Administration
    OSHA Fact Sheet 
    Michigan State University Occupational & Environmental Medicine: MIFACE
    CO: What You Cannot Smell Can Kill You 
    Washington State Department of Labor and Industries
    Sources of Carbon Monoxide in the Workplace 

    National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
    Carbon Monoxide Hazards from Small Gasoline Powered Engines 



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