carbon monoxide leak claimed the life a 13-year-old boy and sent 12 other people to the hospital in Niles, Michigan. The incident happened at a local hotel pool that did not have a carbon monoxide detector.

An eight-year-old disabled Tulsa, Oklahoma boy died of accidental carbon monoxide poisoning when his father fell asleep with the car running in the garage.

These are two examples of recent tragedies that demonstrate the deadly consequences of carbon monoxide poisoning – the silent killer.

It’s the number-one cause of poisoning in the world.

Fire fighters and paramedics are at risk of exposure to carbon monoxide poisoning every day. Exposure to carbon monoxide can increase the risk of heart attack and strokes. Nearly 50 percent of line-of-duty deaths among fire fighters are a result of heart disease and stroke.

There are several things you can do to protect yourself.

Personal Fire Fighter Safety

• Follow your fire department’s standard operating guidelines

• Take refresher trainings and courses on potential deadly gases

• Follow the proper decontamination process. Wash turn-out gear, boots, helmets, gloves and hood after each fire

Community Safety

• Encourage your community to have carbon monoxide detectors in the home outside all sleeping areas

• Appliances burning fuel such as a furnaces, water heaters, fireplaces and wood stoves should have regular maintenance and the ventilation should be checked regularly

• Don’t leave cars running in the garage with doors closed

Share these safety tips to help protect yourself and your community