With much of the state facing extreme cold temperatures this week, residents are being warned to be wary of Carbon Monoxide dangers as they try to keep warm.
The cold weather often leaves many people scrambling to heat up their homes and Tod Pritchard with Wisconsin Emergency Management says that, sometimes, they turn to unsafe solutions. While it may seem like an easy fix, he says you should “never ever bring any kind of heating instrument that was meant to be used outside, inside.”
There are cases each year of people bringing charcoal or gas grills and propane heaters inside. Those devices can release dangerous levels of Carbon Monoxide which, if not vented safely, can quickly lead to CO poisoning and even death. Pritchard says it happens often this time of year, as people try to augment the heat inside their home.
Basic appliances can also be a concern. With homes shut up tight to keep the cold out, Pritchard says it’s also a good time to check any Carbon Monoxide detectors to make sure they are working properly.
If your furnace is having a hard time keeping up with the cold temperatures or you just need someplace to go, the state Department of Health Services says a number of warming shelters will be open statewide to help residents deal with the dangerous cold temperatures.