Carbon monoxide... what's the risk?
Ÿ Each year boaters die or are made seriously ill from carbon monoxide (C0) poisoning.
Ÿ Boats are built to keep water out, but this also makes them good containers for gases and fumes.
Ÿ When carbon-based, appliance and engine fuels, such as gas, LPG, coal, wood, paraffin, oil petrol and diesel don't burn completely, CO is produced.
Ÿ CO build-up in the cabin can occur with one or a mix of these factors:
Ÿ Faulty, badly maintained or misused appliances
Ÿ Exhaust fumes from a boat's engine or generator
Ÿ Escaped flue gases from solid fuel stoves
Ÿ Blocked ventilation or short supply of air - fuel needs oxygen to burn safely
Ÿ In recent years, solid fuel stoves and engine or generator exhaust gases have been responsible for most deaths of boaters from CO poisoning.
Ÿ How the silent killer works!
Ÿ CO can kill in minutes - be prepared to act quickly if you think you are being poisoned!
ŸCO is a highly Poisonous gas that weighs about the same as air.
ŸAt high concentrations, CO can kill without warning, sometimes in only minutes.
ŸIt cannot be seen, smelt, tasted, or felt, that's why it's known as the silent killer!
ŸWhen you breathe in CO, it
replaces the oxygen in your bloodstream, preventing essential supplies to your body tissues, heart, brain and other vital organs.
Ÿ Where victims survive severe CO poisoning, they can be
left with long-term brain damage such as poorer concentration, or mood swings, etc.
Ÿ But even breathing-in lower levels of CO over a longer period, you can still suffer serious effects such as memory problems and difficulty concentrating.
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