Generators Cause Carbon Monoxide Incidents In Hanson, Brockton

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HANSON, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) – As many people in the state are still without power following the nor'easter, multiple people have been hospitalized from generator-related incidents.

The Hanson Fire Department said they responded to two separate carbon monoxide incidents Friday morning. Just before 4:00 a.m., crews responded to a home on Pleasant Street after the residents called 911 and said their carbon monoxide (CO) alarms were going off.

Firefighters found slightly elevated CO levels inside the home. The two occupants were taken to a local hospital for evaluation.

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While they were ventilating the home, firefighters got another call about an hour later that people at another home on Crescent Place were feeling ill.

Inside that home, crews detected extremely high levels of CO and the three residents were taken to the hospital for evaluation as well. The fire department said both incidents stemmed from the use of generators.

“National Grid has several crews in town working to restore power, but complete restoration efforts could take another 24 to 48 hours,” Chief Jerome Thompson said. “Working carbon monoxide alarms are critical to the safety of your family and home.”

Carbon monoxide is a poisonous, odorless, colorless and tasteless gas that is produced any time fuels are burned in things like cars, trucks, stoves, fireplaces or furnaces. Exposure to CO can produce headaches, nausea, dizziness, confusion, fainting, unconsciousness and death.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) provides a number of ways in which people can prevent CO poisoning inside their homes. The CDC says residents should have a battery-powered or battery backup CO monitor when using a generator to power their home.

Read More: Thousands In Mass. Still Without Power After Nor'easter

These incidents occurred as five people at a home in Brockton were also rushed to the hospital with signs of carbon monoxide poisoning overnight Thursday.

WBZ-TV reports Brockton firefighters went to a home on Menlo Street around 10:45 p.m. after a child under the age of 10 called 911.

Firefighters say they found dangerous levels of carbon monoxide in the home, up to 1,000 parts per million, which can be fatal. Crews found a generator running inside the first floor the home, turned it off and ventilated the house.

However, Red Cross Spokesperson Craig Wolf tells WBZ NewsRadio that generators must stay away from the home.

"We know you're a little bit cold and a little uncomfortable but generators have to be outside away from the house," Wolfe says. "They actually can't be taken inside under any circumstance."

WBZ’s Jim MacKay (@JimMacKayOnAir) has more:

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