7 hospitalized after carbon monoxide scare

Posted: Updated:

Seven people, including children, were taken to the hospital after a carbon monoxide scare in Monsey.

Ramapo police say they responded to a call around 10:30 p.m. Monday that a woman fell and was unconscious.

Residents there were reportedly running a generator on an enclosed deck to power lights and space heaters, while using pans of smoldering charcoal to heat the home inside.

The combination produced some of the highest carbon monoxide levels firefighters say they've seen in years.

Nick Longo, of Rockland Fire and Emergency Services, says the threat of carbon monoxide poisoning is high now because it's when people turn on the heat for the first time and begin using generators during storms and power outages.

“Boilers are fired up for the first time, there could be a clog in the chimney, and the carbon monoxide would back up into the home. And people don't notice it, because it is colorless and odorless,” says Longo.

He says it’s important to buy a carbon monoxide detector. Fire officials say it’s different than a smoke detectors and is needed on every floor.

Longo also recommends getting furnaces tested annually and says to never run a generator inside, not even in a detached garage.

Those who suspect carbon monoxide or hear their detector beep should immediately exit the house and call the fire department.

Some Rockland residents may be eligible for free or discounted carbon monoxide detectors through the county's Healthy Neighborhood program.

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