Residents Using Generators Urged To Take Precautions To Ensure Safety
November 1, 2012

Assemblyman Albert Coutinho

NEWARK ? Following the death of two teens in Newark who died from carbon monoxide poisoning from a generator kept too close to a window, Assemblyman Albert Coutinho (D-Essex) on Thursday cautioned residents who are using generators to power their homes to heed recommended precautions to avoid injury or worse.
Coutinho urged residents who are using generators to follow these safety tips from the National Safety Council:

Always read and follow the manufacturer?s operating instructions before running generator
Engines emit carbon monoxide. Never use a generator inside your home, garage, crawl space, or other enclosed areas. Fatal fumes can build up, that neither a fan nor open doors and windows can provide enough fresh air.
Only use your generator outdoors, away from open windows, vents, or doors.
Use a battery-powered carbon monoxide detector in the area you?re running a generator.
Gasoline and its vapors are extremely flammable. Allow the generator engine to cool at least 2 minutes before refueling and always use fresh gasoline. If you do not plan to use your generator in 30 days, don?t forget to stabilize the gas with fuel stabilizer.
Maintain your generator according to the manufacturer?s maintenance schedule for peak performance and safety.
Never operate the generator near combustible materials.
If you have to use extension cords, be sure they are of the grounded type and are rated for the application. Coiled cords can get extremely hot; always uncoil cords and lay them in flat open locations.
Never plug your generator directly into your home outlet. If you are connecting a generator into your home electrical system, have a qualified electrician install a Power Transfer Switch.
Generators produce powerful voltage ? Never operate under wet conditions. Take precautions to protect your generator from exposure to rain and snow.

The two girls, who were sisters, died last night, apparently poisoned by carbon monoxide from a generator kept too close to a window, according to a media report. According to the same report, if a generator is kept too close to a window, the differing temperatures cause a vacuum and will suck the invisible, odorless carbon monoxide inside. In Trenton, one person died and seven others were hospitalized last night with carbon monoxide poisoning caused by a generator, and a New Brunswick man was found dead this morning of suspected carbon monoxide poisoning from a generator.

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