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Childhelp USA
National Child Abuse Hotline
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carbon monoxide poisoning

Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning At A Daycare Center

Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning At A Daycare Center

Silent but deadly; Although that phrase has a humorous connotation, when it comes to carbon monoxide poisoning it is not at all far from the truth.
Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless, tasteless, and poisonous gas that cannot be detected without a device kmown as a CO Detector.
CO is produced as a byproduct of combustion from cars, fireplaces, gas stoves, gas water heaters, and the like. In other words, it is produced and discharged by the incomplete burning of fuel, such as propane, kerosene, gasoline, oil, natural gas, wood and charcoal.
Whenever this byproduct of combustion is not vented properly a dangerous concentration of carbon monoxide gas builds up. This build up of gas is what causes carbon monoxide poisoning. For this reason it is wise for home baby sitters and childcare facility operators to understand what it is and how to prevent it.
Since carbon monoxide poisoning is usually not newsworthy, much of the public is not cognizant of the dangers that carbon monoxide poses to the interior of homes and businesses like daycare centers.
The under reported truth is that more than 20,000 individuals are treated for over-exposure to carbon monoxide every year. Some of them are children at childcare centers.
Similarly, each year averages 61,000 carbon monoxide incidents. And, last but not least, the scariest statistic of them all is nearly 500 people die from this silent but deadly killer every year. 89% of these incidents occur in the safety of someone's home or business.
Fortunately, the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning can be curbed through the use of carbon monoxide detectors. A close cousin of smoke alarms, these detectors can protect kids while they are at a childcare center against the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning. However, they are not reliable in all situations.
For instance, when a CO detector is placed near a corner or where there is poor air circulation it is not likely the alarm will go off properly. Also, when a detector does not receive proper maintenance there is a very good chance it will not be in good enough condition to detect the correct carbon monoxide levels. And of course, if the unit is battery operated the cells will need to be checked and replaced periodically.
For these reasons, it is not enough to rely on technology to keep you and the kids under your care safe from carbon monoxide poisoning. Everyone should know and recognize the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning. The symptoms are:
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Chest Pain
  • Confusion
  • Respiratory Problems
  • Neurological Problems
  • Loss Of Consciousness
Neurological problems and loss of consciousness are the two most dangerous symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning at a daycare center because they can lead to death.
Therefore, if you or anyone near you seems to be experiencing any of the symptoms above it is imperative to evacuate the child care center immediately and then call 911.
Becoming aware of the dangers that carbon monoxide poisoning presents to safety is the first step toward living without its danger. More resources and further information about carbon monoxide can be easily found in various places on the Internet.
Here links to some good resources:
Becoming an educated childcare provider is the first step toward preventing the build up of carbonaceous fumes and the resulting heath hazards associated with them. Buildings such as a day care facility should be well ventilated and inspected regularly for carbon gas leaks.
In conclusion, understanding how to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning at a daycare center is as simple as installing the proper gas detector in all rooms, having routine maintenance done on all fuel burning mechanical systems, and staying alert for the symptoms mentioned above.