According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), each year at least 430 people die from carbon monoxide poisoning, and around 50,000 show up in emergency rooms all over the country due to almost fatal carbon monoxide poisoning. Carbon monoxide is a harmful and toxic gas, and prolonged exposure can cause serious injury, even death. As the temperature drops outside and people are forced to stay indoors for warmth, the number of incidents of carbon monoxide poisoning increases.
Why is Carbon Monoxide so Dangerous?
Exposure to carbon monoxide can cause serious illness or death. Carbon monoxide is an odorless and colorless gas, so there is very little warning of exposure unless there are functioning carbon monoxide detectors. Once exposure occurs, the body rapidly replaces the oxygen in red blood cells with carbon monoxide, causing neurological issues and sometimes death. Carbon monoxide poisoning most often occurs from fuel-burning appliances and engines. Generally, toxic poisoning happens when the appliance or engine is defective or in an area that is not well ventilated.
Common sources of carbon monoxide gases include:
- Gas Engines Running in Enclosed Space
- Furnaces Generators
- Space Heaters
- Gas Ranges
- Gas Clothes Dryers
- Charcoal Grills
- Water Heaters
Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Carbon monoxide cases often occur during power outages when alternate sources of power are utilized. It’s important to reiterate that 50,000 people were treated last year at hospitals for accidental carbon monoxide poisoning, but over 400 people died. Carbon monoxide poisoning is a serious but avoidable problem. Many people are able to protect themselves and those around them by noticing the signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide exposure.
Symptoms of exposure to carbon monoxide may include the following:
- Chest Pain
People exposed to carbon monoxide poisoning may be entitled to damages when property owners, landlords, or maintenance companies are negligent. Additionally, product liability lawsuits may also be warranted if the injury was caused by faulty equipment.
Toxic Torts Law Claims in Kentucky
Based on toxic tort laws, when people are harmed by chemicals or toxic materials, they could be entitled to damages. When people are injured or exposed because a person, company, or entity was negligent, the injured victims have the right to file a lawsuit or claim to hold those at fault responsible.
Victims who’ve been injured by carbon monoxide poisoning could be entitled to compensation, but it’s important to start by finding out your legal rights. Carbon monoxide poisoning lawsuits can be complex, so finding a Kentucky attorney ready to help you navigate the system is vital to your claim.
If you think you may have a toxic tort case in Kentucky, call (502) 242-8877 to schedule a consultation with Brett H. Oppenheimer, PLLC.