4 Adults And 1 Child Sickened By Carbon Monoxide Poisoning By Using Generator In Basement Of Home In Trenton

Where was the required Carbon Monoxide Detector?

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–According to Trenton Public Information Officer Timothy J. Carroll, Trenton EMS responded to a call of general sickness on North Olden Ave., and they detected what they thought was carbon monoxide presence. Trenton Fire Department arrived and dispatched the Hazardous Materials Team, which registered extremely high levels of carbon monoxide, roughly 600 parts per million, in the rental property due to use of a gas-powered generator in the basement.

Four adults and a three-year-old child were transported to Capital Health.

Medical Helicopters were called and the sickened were transported to New York for treatment in a hyperbaric chamber that is used in cases of severe carbon monoxide poisoning.

Where was the required Carbon Monoxide Detector? New Jersey is one of 27 states that requires carbon monoxide alarms in dwellings.

A NJ State Police medical helicopter at the landing zone at Captial Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton. File photo by: Brian McCarthy

From the New Jersey Poison Control Center

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a deadly poisonous gas which cannot be seen, smelled or tasted. Signs and symptoms of CO poisoning may include: headaches, sore muscles, confusion, irritability, sleepiness, nausea, vomiting, irregular heartbeat, impaired vision/coordination, fatigue, shortness of breath and death. Appliances and other items that burn fuel may be a source of CO gas (e.g., furnaces, generators, gas oven/stoves, gas dryers, wood stoves, automobile exhaust, fireplaces and lawn equipment). Unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning is common during severe weather conditions and when the heating system is first started every fall.

In addition, never use gasoline powered equipment/generators or tools, kerosene heaters, or charcoal/propane grills inside the house or in enclosed spaces; do not heat the house/ apartment with the stove. During snowstorms, clear any snow accumulation from all outside dryer, heating vents and car mufflers.

If you think you or someone you know is experiencing carbon monoxide poisoning, seek medical care immediately. If the carbon monoxide detector is sounding, leave the house immediately and call the gas company or fire department. They will come out to the home and try to find where the carbon monoxide is coming from.

The best treatment is prevention. Have heating ducts, flues and chimneys inspected and cleaned regularly by a professional. Install carbon monoxide detectors in all sleeping areas.

If you have a question about carbon monoxide, remember help is just a phone call away. 1-800-222-1222.