Now, this is really odd!
It’s being reported that an Austin Texas police officer is now suing The Ford Motor Company and Dealership Leif Johnson Ford after he claims he was left severely ill from his patrol car leaking carbon monoxide poisoning. He says it happened inside one of the cruisers and that as a result the Austin Police department was forced to install mobile detectors in all of their units.
It’s being reported that this year alone 26 of the patrol SUVs have already tested positive for the toxic gas. And that as many as 8 Austin Police Officers have suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning. Let’s hope and pray this is only a case of a faulty car design and not some type of sabotage to make our police officers sick.
Carbon monoxide poisoning
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Carbon monoxide is an odorless gas that causes thousands of deaths each year in North America. Breathing in carbon monoxide is very dangerous. It is the leading cause of poisoning death in the United States.
This article is for information only. DO NOT use it to treat or manage an actual poison exposure. If you or someone you are with has an exposure, call your local emergency number (such as 911), or your local poison center can be reached directly by calling the national toll-free Poison Help hotline (1-800-222-1222) from anywhere in the United States.
Carbon monoxide is a chemical produced from the incomplete burning of natural gas or other products containing carbon. This includes exhaust, faulty heaters, fires, and factory emissions.
The following items may produce carbon monoxide:
Anything that burns coal, gasoline, kerosene, oil, propane, or wood
Charcoal grills (charcoal should never be burned indoors)
Indoor and portable heating systems
Portable propane heaters
Stoves (indoor and camp stoves)
Water heaters that use natural gas
Note: This list may not be all-inclusive.
When you breathe in carbon monoxide, the poison replaces the oxygen in your bloodstream. Your heart, brain, and body will become starved of oxygen.
Symptoms vary from person to person. Those at high risk include young children, older adults, people with lung or heart disease, people who are at high altitudes, and smokers. Carbon monoxide can harm a fetus (unborn baby still in the womb).
Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning may include:
Breathing problems, including no breathing, shortness of breath, or rapid breathing
Chest pain (may occur suddenly in people with angina)
General weakness and achiness
Low blood pressure
Rapid or abnormal heartbeat
Nausea and vomiting
Animals can also be poisoned by carbon monoxide. People who have pets at home may notice that their animals become weak or unresponsive from carbon monoxide exposure. Often the pets will get sick before humans.
Since many of these symptoms can occur with viral illnesses, carbon monoxide poisoning is often confused with these conditions. This can lead to a delay in getting help.
If the person breathed in the poison, immediately move him or her to fresh air. Seek immediate medical right away.
Install a carbon monoxide detector on each floor of your home. Place an additional detector near any major gas-burning appliances (such as a furnace or water heater).
Many carbon monoxide poisonings occur in the winter months when furnaces, gas fireplaces, and portable heaters are being used and windows are closed. Have heaters and gas-burning appliances regularly inspected to make sure they are safe to use.
Before Calling Emergency
The following information is helpful for emergency assistance:
Person’s age, weight, and condition (for example, is the person awake or alert?)
How long they may have been exposed to the carbon monoxide, if known
However, DO NOT delay calling for help if this information is not immediately available.
Your local poison center can be reached directly by calling the national toll-free Poison Help hotline (1-800-222-1222) from anywhere in the United States. They will give you further instructions.
This is a free and confidential service. All local poison control centers in the United States use this national number. You should call if you have any questions about poisoning or poison prevention. You can call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
What to Expect at the Emergency Room
The health care provider will measure and monitor the person’s vital signs, including temperature, pulse, breathing rate, and blood pressure. The person may receive:
Airway support, including oxygen, breathing tube through the mouth (intubation), and breathing machine (ventilator)
Blood and urine tests
EKG (electrocardiogram, or heart tracing)
Fluids through a vein (intravenous or IV)
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (high-pressure oxygen given in a special chamber)
Medicines to treat symptoms
Carbon monoxide poisoning can cause death. For those who survive, recovery is slow. How well a person does depends on the amount and length of exposure to the carbon monoxide. Permanent brain damage may occur.
If the person still has impaired mental ability after 2 weeks, the chance of a complete recovery is not very good. Impaired mental ability can reappear after a person has been symptom-free for 1 to 2 weeks.
The Austin Police Department has said that The Ford Motor Company has issued a technical safety bulletin in December of 2017 which expressed concern over possible exhaust leaking into some of its Ford Explorer SUVs. Stating that the models between 2011 and 2015 might be affected by this. Ford went on to explain that once they narrow down what the exact issue is they will be issuing a recall and taking care of the problem at no charge.
Carbon monoxide which is also known as “CO” is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless toxic gas produced by incomplete combustion in fuel-burning devices such as cars and trucks. It can also be a byproduct of gas-powered furnaces and portable generators. Persons with CO poisoning often overlook the symptoms and undetected exposure can lead to death. Unintentional CO exposure accounts for an estimated 15,000 emergency department visits and 500 unintentional deaths in the United States each year alone. Glad to see this issue was detected before anyone died because of it. Let’s pray Ford is able to take care of this issue ASAP.
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