SHERIDAN — Wyoming’s Poison Center, sponsored by the Wyoming Department of Health’s Office of Medical Services, reports that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has ranked Wyoming as one of the states with the highest mortality rate from carbon monoxide.
Every year more than 400 Americans die from unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning and 20,000 are seen in emergency rooms with another 4,000 hospitalized.
Carbon monoxide is a gas produced when fuels burn incompletely most commonly caused by lack of ventilation in a car, using unvented space heaters, using heating equipment that is in poor repair and using charcoal grills indoors.
It has no color, taste or smell.
Wyoming’s Poison Center offers tips on prevention as a free community service and can be contacted at 1-800-222-1222.
Some of these tips include inspecting all fuel burning equipment annually, installing carbon monoxide alarms on every level of your home and never leaving a car running in an attached garage, even with the garage door open.
The carbon monoxide death rate is highest among people older than 65 years of age. Symptoms associated with poisoning include sleepiness, headache, dizziness, blurred vision, nausea, shortness of breath and convulsions.
The first step to treatment is to get the victim in to fresh air and then seek immediate medical attention.
For more information call the poison center.