BURTON, SC (WTOC) - A local family of five was saved from toxic fumes in their home Friday thanks to the activation of their carbon monoxide detector.
The Burton Fire District responded to the alarm at the residence in Burton, just before 7 a.m. The family heard the alarm and was able to safely evacuate before it was too late. No injuries were reported.
Firefighters entered the home in full gear, including breathing apparatus, and found dangerously high levels of carbon monoxide in the home as a result of a malfunctioning water heater in the garage.
In October, a family in the Shell Point neighborhood was critically overcome by carbon monoxide in their home due to a generator operating close to an open window. The home did not have a carbon monoxide detector.
All five members of the family were transported to the hospital in serious condition but luckily survived.
According to the CDC, Carbon monoxide (CO) is a colorless and odorless gas produced any time you burn fuel in cars or trucks, small engines, stoves, lanterns, grills, fireplaces, gas ranges, or furnaces. CO can build up indoors and poison people and animals who breathe it.
Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning can mimic that of the flu and often go undetected. Headaches and nausea are most common signs. Carbon monoxide is most deadly for those who are asleep, and firefighters encourage families to purchase carbon monoxide detectors for their home and can be purchased at most department stores, and often come as a combined smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector.
With colder months ahead, firefighters are stressing the importance of having a working detector in your home; It could save your life.
For more information on carbon monoxide and protecting your home, click here.