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Here’s how to detect carbon monoxide poisoning in your home

Carbon monoxide alarm (Flickr/CORGI HomePlan)

PHOENIX — After a Phoenix-area family of four was found dead of suspected carbon monoxide poisoning, law enforcement officials are encouraging residents to be aware of the dangers in their own home.

Capt. Rob McDade with the Phoenix Fire Department said whether people are sleeping in their own home or on vacation in another residence, purchasing a carbon monoxide detector — and maintaining it — can mean the difference between life or death.

McDade said every home should have its own carbon monoxide detector, which will let you know when the levels in the home have reached a “lethal level.”

But even for families who are traveling and staying in someone else’s residence, McDade said there are plug-in or battery-operated carbon monoxide detectors that do not need to be hardwired into the home.

“It’s the best way to prevent [carbon monoxide poisoning],” he said. “If you’re traveling, you can throw one in your suitcase. It might just be the best $25 you ever spent.”

McDade said carbon monoxide poisoning is difficult to detect because it is almost a “silent killer.” Some of the symptoms include a dull headache, getting dizzy, nauseous or vomiting.

“It has almost a numbing effect on your body,” he added. “If everyone’s asleep, you’re not going to get woken up with extreme pain. It basically attacks in the middle of the night.”

If everyone in the home starts getting these symptoms, McDade said he advises family members to get out immediately and call 911.

KTAR News’ Griselda Zetino contributed to this report. 

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