Red, White & Blue buys carbon monoxide detector
BRECKENRIDGE – Red, White & Blue Fire District recently purchased the first portable carbon monoxide monitor in Summit County. All the fire departments have gas detectors, but they can only be used for external carbon monoxide detection in buildings and homes. With this new device, Red, White & Blue firefighters will now be able to identify people suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning. “Carbon monoxide poisoning can present in many different ways,” said paramedic Steve Webster. “Often, at lower levels, the symptoms are similar to those of the flu or acute mountain sickness. With this detector, we will be able to quickly identify carbon monoxide poisoning and be able to begin proper treatment and alert hospital staff of the situation.” When dealing with patients suffering from CO poisoning, speed of treatment is the key to a successful outcome and reduced risk of long-term neurological and cardiac damage. As exposure levels increase, more significant signs and symptoms include mental clouding, severe headache, confusion, dizziness and fainting. If exposure is severe or prolonged, coma and death may follow. “Our primary goals in purchasing this device are to be able to evaluate any level of carbon monoxide in our citizens and guests, as well as our firefighters after they exit a structure fire,” said Lt. Zach Lynch. “Although firefighters are required to wear breathing apparatus in a fire, they can unknowingly become exposed to carbon monoxide after the fire is extinguished and their breathing apparatus has been removed.”The carbon monoxide detector will be stored in the battalion chief’s car.
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