The Silent Killer

The Silent Killer

Fire Protection Kent

Carbon monoxide is a horror. An invisible, odourless gas that is often the by-product of other processes. It is a killer, often called the silent killer.

The only alarm that has ever been activated in a real emergency in our house is the CO2 alarm. A lovely looking but very old range cooker was leaking dangerous amounts of CO2, we had no idea until the alarm went off. Luckily the house is drafty and I keep windows open – at night especially.

Ironically when the alarm sounded the house was full of kids. There had been a birthday party for one of the little ones, some of their cousins were staying for the weekend. A happy Sunday morning, extended family milling around while a nice breakfast was cooked. And then the alarm.

Well, I flipped… Flung open all the windows and doors and yelled: “Get the children out of the house!!” I bellowed repeated until all of the kids were outside.

With enough fresh air circulating the alarm eventually stopped beeping. One ‘brave’ soul offered to stay in the kitchen, close the windows and doors, carry on cooking and see if the alarm went off again…

“NO!!!” was the response from the rest of us, he was voted down completely!!

But that illustrates how little people know about and feel threatened by this invisible poison. Like fire alarms CO2, or carbon monoxide, alarms save lives!

We called the emergency services who came round pronto, turned off the gas and slapped big yellow ‘do not use’ signs all over the cooker.

Ah well, nothing for it but to go shopping for a new range… but first – we all went out for breakfast!!

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