People have known about the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning for years. Many have used it to commit suicide, either sticking their heads in the oven with the gas on or shutting themselves in the garage with the car running. Yet, people continue to accidentally die of carbon monoxide poisoning because their employers did not ensure adequate ventilation.
You cannot see carbon monoxide, and you cannot smell it. That is what makes it so dangerous in an enclosed space. Employers, therefore, must take steps to reduce the chance it harms their workers.
3 steps employers should take to reduce the risk from carbon monoxide
Here are some of the things that your employer should be doing:
- Installing and checking detectors: These alarms are essential to alert people to high levels of gas. Much like a fire alarm, you can only rely on them if you schedule and complete regular tests and maintenance.
- Providing adequate ventilation: Not everyone can work in a setting with views of the outside world. Yet windows and doors are not the only way to ventilate a place. Air shafts, grates, fans and extractor units can all play a vital role in ensuring the air you work in is fit to breathe.
- Training you in the warning signs: Carbon monoxide can make you feel drowsy, nauseous or give you a headache. If workers understand these danger signs, it allows people to look out for each other.
Carbon monoxide poisoning can have long-term effects such as brain damage if not caught in time. Claiming workers’ compensation benefits will be crucial to cover any costs or loss of earnings you may incur.