Calgary, AB,

Calgary Fire Department encourages Calgarians to check their smoke and carbon monoxide alarms this weekend

November 1-7 is Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week

Carbon monoxide (CO)also known as the invisible killer, is a poisonous gas that has no colour, smell or taste.  You can be poisoned by a small amount of CO over a longer period of time or by a large amount of CO over a shorter amount of time. If you are exposed to CO, you may become sick, unconscious, suffer brain damage or even die. Symptoms of exposure include confusion, fatigue, headaches, nausea and dizziness.

Sources of CO gas in your home can come from a car left running in an attached garage, your furnace, hot water tank or any household appliances which run on fuels such as natural gas, propane or wood. Install at least one carbon monoxide alarm on every level of your home, including the basement, and particularly, have one in or near your bedrooms.

Citizens will be turning their clocks back an hour on November 7. As you move from clock to clock in your home, the Calgary Fire Department encourages you to change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms. Once you've done that, push the test button to ensure they are working. It is recommended that battery operated alarms have the batteries changed annually. All smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, whether battery operated or hardwired, should be tested monthly by pushing the test button. Smoke alarms should be replaced when they reach ten years of age. Carbon monoxide alarms can have varied life spans so check the expiry date. Plan, discuss and practice your home escape plan with everyone in your residence.

As the Calgary Fire Department has witnessed on many occasions, working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms can be the difference between life and death. For more information on carbon monoxide safety, including symptoms of exposure, how to test and maintain alarms and how to prevent CO build-up in your home, please click here.

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