Comitta warns residents of the dangers of carbon monoxide
With November being Carbon Monoxide Awareness Month, State Sen. Carolyn Comitta recently joined the Carly Imbierowicz Foundation to warn residents and families of the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning.
“As we approach winter and temperatures dip, many of us are again turning on our heaters, stoves, or fireplaces to keep warm,” Comitta said. “However, it’s important that we are all cognizant of the dangers of carbon monoxide, a colorless, odorless, deadly gas that poisons an estimated 95,000 people annually across our nation.”
Carbon monoxide, more commonly referred to as CO, is a highly toxic gas, produced by devices that burn fuels like vehicles, furnaces, generators, grills, and many others that are found in our everyday lives.
According to the National Carbon Monoxide Awareness Association, it is responsible for 50,000 visits to the emergency room each year, and tragically, 1,200 deaths.
Sadly, one of those was 16-year-old Carly Marie Imbierowicz of Highland Township, whose life was cut short by carbon monoxide poisoning on November 22, 2014. In the wake of their family tragedy, her parents, Donna and Matt, launched the Carly Imbierowicz Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to sharing information and raising awareness of the dangers of carbon monoxide, especially among young people and new drivers.
For nearly a decade, they have worked to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning by sharing life-saving information and resources. Recently, they donated about a thousand carbon monoxide detectors to community organizations be distributed to neighbors in need.
“We are so grateful to both Senator Comitta and her wonderful staff for their gracious and continued support and efforts to save more lives from CO, the silent killer,” said Donna and Matt Imbierowicz.
Comitta and the Carly Imbierowicz Foundation also encourage residents to educate themselves on the dangers of carbon monoxide:
- Have heaters and gas-burning appliances regularly inspected to make sure they are safe.
- Install carbon monoxide detectors on each floor of a home and near any gas-burning appliance.
- Make sure your vehicle’s exhaust pipe is free of snow, mud, leaves, or debris.
- Know the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning – nausea, headaches, confusion, and drowsiness.
- Remember that children can be especially vulnerable to carbon monoxide poisoning.
- If you feel you are experiencing carbon monoxide poisoning, get to fresh air immediately.
In recognition of the work of the Carly Imbierowicz Foundation and other advocates, Comitta introduced a Senate resolution officially designating November as Carbon Monoxide Awareness Month. In addition, the Pennsylvania State Capitol dome was lit up yellow from Nov. 20 to 26 in recognition of Carbon Monoxide Awareness Month.
For more information on Carly Imbierowicz Foundation, visit www.cmiawareness.org.