Contact Us

Health Officials Warn About Generator Misuse [AUDIO]

Since Sandy, many people have acquired backup generators to keep the lights on in the event of a future emergency, but officials warn they have to be used safely.

Flikr user kylegordon
Flikr user kylegordon

State Health Commissioner Mary O’Dowd says the portable devices produce exhaust gases, and that’s not a problem if they are properly placed outside and away from your home.

O’Dowd says improper use indoors or in a garage can bring poisonous carbon monoxide into your body, sometimes without your even realizing it.

“At very low levels, it can cause headaches, sleepiness, fatigue and confusion. At higher levels, it can result in nausea, vomiting, impaired vision and even death,” O’Dowd explained.

If you are using a generator and suspect CO poisoning take immediate action including:

  • Call 9-1-1 immediately if a person is not breathing, is unconscious or unresponsive, or having seizures or convulsions.
  • Exit the home/building/enclosed space immediately.
  • Contact your local fire department.
  • From a safe area, call the NJ Poison Experts at 800-222-1222, for immediate treatment advice.

Health Commissioner O’Dowd says there were 14 cases of CO2 poisoning in Jersey in the two weeks prior to Sandy last year. The number of cases soared to almost 400 in the two weeks after the storm.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Best of WOBM

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for WOBM Listener Club quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive WOBM Listener Club contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.