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Defying the Senses...the Dangers of Carbon Monoxide

Defying the Senses...the Dangers of Carbon Monoxide

Published 12-19-22

Submitted by Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG)

gas range

Originally published on PSEG ENERGIZE!

According to the Centers for Disease Control, approximately 20,000 people are taken to an emergency room and 400 people die every year from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning.

What causes carbon monoxide poisoning?

Carbon monoxide may be released as the result of improper functioning of:

  • heaters
  • boilers
  • fireplaces
  • stoves
  • other gas or fuel-powered equipment

When carbon monoxide is released in an enclosed area such as a home, it may result in carbon monoxide poisoning.


What are the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning?

Exposure to carbon monoxide can cause flu-like symptoms, including:

  • headache
  • dizziness
  • weakness
  • nausea
  • loss of muscle control

If you experience these symptoms after being in an enclosed area, go out into fresh air immediately.

Seek emergency medical help if symptoms do not quickly improve. Prolonged exposure to carbon monoxide can lead to serious illness and even death.

carbon monoxide alarm

How can I prevent carbon monoxide poisoning?

  • The most important thing you can do is properly maintain heaters, boilers, fireplaces, stoves and other gas or fuel-powered equipment.
  • Carbon monoxide detectors are an important second line of defense.
  • If a monitor goes off, get out of your house and call 911 immediately. Then, call the PSE&G Emergency Service line at 1-800-880-7734 (PSEG).
  • The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends placing a carbon monoxide alarm in every area of your home. If just one alarm is installed, it should be placed near the sleeping rooms of the house.

Be sure to check the batteries of your carbon monoxide detector at least every six months.

carbon monoxide alarm battery

Other ways to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning include:

  • Never use a gas oven or range to heat a room. This can deplete oxygen from the air and cause asphyxiation or severe carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Ensure that any natural-gas-burning appliances are installed, maintained and used safely and according to manufacturer instructions. Gas appliances should be checked by a qualified technician periodically to ensure that they are working properly.
  • Do not allow vehicles, lawnmowers, snow blowers, or any gasoline-powered engine to idle in a garage attached to a house. Carbon monoxide can drift into the living space and create a hazardous situation.
  • Never use a generator or other fuel-powered machines inside. Hazardous carbon monoxide fumes are odorless and can quickly overwhelm you if a generator is used indoors. This includes outbuildings like sheds or garages.

Learn more about PSE&G here

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Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG)

Public Service Enterprise Group (PSEG)

Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. (PSEG) (NYSE: PEG) is a publicly traded diversified energy company with approximately 13,000 employees. Headquartered in Newark, N.J., PSEG's principal operating subsidiaries are: Public Service Electric and Gas Co. (PSE&G), PSEG Power and PSEG Long Island. PSEG is a Fortune 500 company included in the S&P 500 Index and has been named to the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for North America for 11 consecutive years (

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