5/7/2010 12:13 PM
Carbon monoxide (CO) is the number one cause of poisoning deaths in the United States. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, “For the period 1999-2004, an average of 439 persons died annually from unintentional, non–fire-related CO poisoning (range: 400 in 1999 to 473 in 2003).”(http://jama.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/full/299/9/1011) Carbon monoxide is a colorless and odorless gas; the initial effects are similar to altitude sickness (headache, lightheadedness, dizziness, shortness of breath) and are often ignored until it is too late.
In December of 2008 a family vacationing in Aspen, Colorado was killed as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning. (http://abcnews.go.com/US/story?id=6376209&page=1) Statistically about nine people each year die from carbon monoxide poisoning. In March of 2009, Governor Ritter signed a law for the State of Colorado concerning a requirement that carbon monoxide alarms be installed in residential properties. Essentially the law requires that in every single family residence with gas fired appliances or an attached garage, there must be a carbon monoxide alarm within 15 feet of each bedroom if the house is being sold, or rented, or has a building permit filed (remodel and new construction).
The law is slightly different regarding multi-family dwellings and multi-family dwellings used for rental purposes; there is even a provision for multi-family dwellings where there is a centralized alarm.
Please click here to read the actual law to ensure you and those you represent are in compliance.
More information on carbon monoxide safety and statistics can be found on the National Fire Protection Association’s website.
We have recently been working with several Realtors and prospective home buyers to conduct assessments of security and fire alarm systems. One item that continues to concern us is the lack of carbon monoxide detectors in many of these homes. Please contact Vail Electronics to schedule an inspection of the life safety systems in your home.