Information on Sources of Carbon Monoxide Gas Leaks

Carbon monoxide is a toxic gas that is a leading cause of fatal poisonings in the U.S. However, it is widely agreed among experts who deal with carbon monoxide poisoning that causes of these injuries are nearly always avoidable.

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Some of the more common sources of carbon monoxide fumes may include:

  • Gas Furnaces
  • Generators
  • Water Heaters
  • Fireplaces
  • Automobiles
  • Electric Heaters
  • Boats

In most cases, carbon monoxide gas leaks are caused by a person or corporation who made a mistake, such as designing or manufacturing a defective product, failing to perform proper maintenance to avoid the build up of the poisonous gas or neglecting to take proper precautions that could reduce the risk of injury from carbon monoxide exposure.

The carbon monoxide lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. review potential cases for individuals throughout the United States who may have suffered severe brain damage or even been killed from a gas leak that could have been prevented. To review whether you or your loved ones may be entitled to financial compensation, request a free consultation and claim evaluation.

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Causes

Carbon monoxide is an odorless, tasteless, colorless gas created when substances that contain carbon are oxidized in low oxygen settings.

The gas is often formed in internal combustion engines or gas-burning devices, such as ovens.

Decades ago, carbon monoxide leaks used to be a much bigger problem, since coal gas was in heavy use and cars were not equipped with catalytic converters. However, recent developments have greatly reduced the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Since the adoption of natural gas, the development of a better understanding of how appliances and equipment can generate carbon monoxide, as well as the wide-spread availability of effective carbon monoxide detectors, nearly all cases of carbon monoxide poisoning should now be avoidable.

The current source of most carbon monoxide problems stem from unvented heating systems or electricity-generating systems. All such systems, including furnaces, fireplaces, water heaters, flues and chimneys, should be inspected annually by a certified inspector.

Poisoning from carbon monoxide results from a buildup of the lethal gas in an enclosed area. The use of detectors or alarms can nearly eliminate the risk that individuals suffer permanent brain damage from carbon monoxide or other serious injury, alerting them to the gas before it causes symptoms.

Common Carbon Monoxide Gas Leak Sources

    Carbon Monoxide from Electric Heaters: Space heaters, even though electric, can also be a source of carbon monoxide gas, particularly if they are unvented. Facilities that use space heaters should have proper venting and space heaters should come with clear instructions on their safe use and how to avoid potential health hazards.

    Carbon Monoxide from Fireplaces: Fireplaces should have clean, clear ventilation to the outside. The flue should be cleaned and well-maintained and they should be designed in a way so that the smoke and gases naturally travel outside instead of being trapped inside. In rental properties the responsibility to perform proper fireplace upkeep and maintenance rests with the landlord.

    Carbon Monoxide from Gas Furnaces and Water Heaters: Proper maintenance and ventilation on gas furnaces should prevent any chance of carbon monoxide poisoning from a furnace, boiler or water heater, if the device is properly designed, installed and maintained.

    Carbon Monoxide from Generators: All generators should be placed outside. They should never be used inside homes, garages, crawlspaces, sheds or in similar areas. They should also be placed so that the fumes do not travel into a home through a nearby window. Federal health experts often see spikes in carbon monoxide generator poisoning following a hurricane or other event that knocks out power for long periods of time.

    Carbon Monoxide in Hotels: It is the responsibility of any hotel to ensure that carbon monoxide poisoning is prevented through the proper maintenance of all equipment and through the use of working carbon monoxide detectors throughout the hotel that will warn guests of carbon monoxide gas buildup before it reaches lethal levels.

    Carbon Monoxide on Boats: The use of gas furnaces and engines in enclosed houseboats and other types of boats have led to numerous cases of carbon monoxide poisoning. Boaters should be sure such devices are properly ventilated, and should be aware of whether their boat is parked next to a boat or exhaust port that could be venting the lethal gas onto their boat.

Preventable Carbon Monoxide Leak Lawsuits

If you or a loved one were injured or died due to a carbon monoxide source that may have been prevented, financial compensation may be available through a lawsuit.

The lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. investigate potential carbon monoxide leaks for individuals throughout the United States to help determine what legal options may be available.

All cases are handled on a contingency fee basis, which means that there are no out-of-pocket costs to hire a lawyer and we receive no attorney fees or expense reimbursement unless a recovery is obtained for an injury caused by carbon monoxide.