Nov 16 2016
The Evanston carbon monoxide poisoning sent eight people to the hospital. The source of the carbon monoxide was apparently a blocked furnace exhaust vent. The levels of carbon monoxide in the residences were 200 ppm.
Dangerous levels of carbon monoxide are generally considered to be above 100 ppm with people experiencing symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, such as headaches, nausea, and dizziness. This should be considered an emergency situation.
Carbon monoxide alarms work differently than smoke alarms. When a smoke alarm goes off, you can rely on your other senses of vision and smell to guide your response. You will know how urgent the emergency is or whether or not it was a false alarm.
Carbon monoxide, on the other hand, is colorless, odorless, and tasteless. When the carbon monoxide alarm goes off, you will not be able to rely on your other senses. You should evacuate and call 911 immediately. You should not return to the building until the cause of the carbon monoxide is fixed.
Detectors should always be placed in the range of bedrooms where they can be heard, not just in boiler rooms. The higher the levels, the quicker the alarm will sound. When the alarm sounds, you may have been exposed to carbon monoxide for a prolonged period prior to the alarm sounding.
In carbon monoxide litigation, four cause and origin issues are considered, including the source of the carbon monoxide, the pathway the carbon monoxide followed from the source to the person’s poisoned, the driving force that caused the carbon monoxide to move from the source through the pathway(s), and the individuals exposed. The fire department and gas company are investigating the Evanston carbon monoxide poisoning. If any individual or business is responsible for any of the first three aspects described above, they could be found at fault in the carbon monoxide litigation.