Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas created primarily by the burning of fossil fuels, such as gas, oil, or propane. When you are exposed to excessive amounts of carbon monoxide without adequate ventilation, this can cause serious, long-term injuries to your brain, muscles, and internal organs.
Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include:
- NauseaHeadachesDizzinessLight-headednessFatigue and weakness Loss of consciousnessWith pronlonged carbon monoxide poisoning, death can result.
The immediate care for carbon monoxide poisoning usually requires removing the victim from the carbon monoxide exposure and emergency room care to provide oxygen therapy in an effort to normalize the levels of oxygen in the blood which have been altered by the inhalation of the of the carbon monoxide.
Even when there is prompt care received, the victims of a carbon monoxide episode frequently suffer long-term consequences, assuming that the expsoure is not fatal. The consequences of carbon monoxide may include:
- Brain damage, including changes in memory, behavior, and cognition;Damage to internal organs, in particular the heart; andMuscle weakness and loss of coordination
There are a number of common sources of carbon monoxide poisoning:
- Automobile exhaust;Defective and improperly vented heating devices such as heaters, clothes dryers, and ovens;Fires;Portable generators and other power equipment; andRecreational equipment such as grills, lamps, or heaters
Because carbon monoxide is so dangerous and so difficult to detect, Illinois law requires the installation of carbon monoxide detectors within 15 feet of all sleeping rooms within a home. Landlords have a responsibility for providing carbon monoxide deterctors in rental dwellings such as apartments or trailers. Local ordinances may also require additional measures be taken to ensure carbon monoxide safety at home.
When someone suffers from carbon monoxide poisoning, careful investigation is required to identify the source of the carbon monnoxide poisoning and determining who was responsible for the accident and how the injuries were caused. Without the proper investigation we are known for, victims of carbon monoxide poisoning may not receive the compensation which they deserve.
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