Carbon Monoxide: Odorless and Almost Deadly


Never jump to conclusions. We tell ourselves this daily, and yet all too often we still jump to conclusions. Thankfully a woman in Greeley, Colorado didn’t just jump to conclusions and asked the proper questions before an unimaginable tragedy occurred. Twelve people were sickened and one child was hospitalized, but it could have been much worse after a malfunctioning boiler pumped carbon monoxide into a YMCA. The gas had built up to deadly levels before the woman, noticing she was becoming ill and weak, convinced her husband to evacuate the building.

It is very common not to feel well, and we tend to ignore our own feelings when we are watching over our children. But sometimes the only way to make our children safe is to be safe ourselves, and that means being aware of anything that might be wrong. There are no visible signs of carbon monoxide, and there is no smell to warn you. All you can do is pay attention to the symptoms, which include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Shortness of breath and weakness
  • Blurred vision
  • Dizziness
  • A headache

So far there has been no follow-up to determine whether the boiler received its proper inspection, and because no one was killed it’s possible that no investigation will take place. But for the child in the hospital, a child who already suffered from asthma, the long-term health consequences could be severe.

If you or a loved one was exposed to a hazardous material, be it carbon monoxide or anything else, it can take years to determine just how much of a negative effect the exposure caused. Contact an attorney to keep your options open and to help you find out whether or not the exposure was the result of negligence.