Carbon monoxide – San Antonio , TX
The devastating impact that carbon monoxide poisoning can have on families and communities resulted in the law in Texas being amended to compel every homeowner, apartment building landlord, and daycare runner, to ensure that they have a carbon monoxide detector on their premises.
However, despite these efforts, cases of carbon monoxide poisoning do still occur. It seems there is still a need for the public to be educated further on the risks associated with carbon monoxide exposure.
Sadly, a lot of the victims of carbon monoxide poisoning are actually not at fault. The blame, in such cases, lies with the owners of the building or those who installed a defective carbon monoxide detector.
If you or your loved one has suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning, and you suspect that the carbon monoxide detectors were improperly installed, or for some reason failed to detect the gas, then give us a call.
With us, you are guaranteed to have a trusted and highly experienced personal injury attorney on your side. We can help you determine fault, bring the responsible parties to book, seek compensation, and win justice for you or your family members.
Give us a call today, or visit our friendly staff at our law offices in San Antonio, TX for a free consultation with a carbon monoxide poisoning lawyer.
What Is Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?
Sometimes dubbed “the silent killer,” carbon monoxide poisoning happens when there is a buildup of carbon monoxide in the red blood cells which affects their ability to carry oxygen. This usually happens when there is a carbon monoxide leak resulting in high concentrations of the gas within an enclosed area.
In such cases, your body will replace the oxygen in the blood with carbon monoxide to such an extent that you will be starved of oxygen without even realizing it. As the carbon monoxide levels continue to build in your body, you will become incapacitated until you reach the point of fatal carbon monoxide poisoning.
Carbon monoxide itself is a colorless and odorless gas that is usually produced by gas appliances and other equipment that have combustion engines. Every year, more than 400 people die from carbon monoxide poisoning across the country. Winter is the most dangerous time of the year that sees a sharp rise in carbon monoxide cases.
Dangers of Carbon Monoxide
Due to the seriousness of carbon monoxide poisonings in Texas, our law firm is dedicated to not only fighting for the right of victims but also educating the public about the dangers of this odorless and colorless gas.
Chief among these is death as a result of carbon monoxide exposure. Large amounts of carbon monoxide can very quickly overcome you in a matter of minutes, and if you do not receive emergency assistance, the chances of survival are low, and you will soon lose consciousness and suffocate.
Losing lives this way should never be allowed to happen, which is why you need a carbon monoxide poisoning lawyer to fight for you. Thanks to our stellar attorney-client relationship, we are the right people to contact if you have suffered harm from suspected carbon monoxide poisoning.
How To Prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
The first step in preventing severe poisoning from carbon monoxide is to avoid being exposed to the gases in the first place. Visit our law firm for more details on this, but in the meantime, the following tips will help:
- Install a carbon monoxide detector in your home or apartment building and make sure it has a battery backup in case of a power outage. Also, be sure to quickly leave the building if the alarm sounds
- Hire qualified technicians to regularly service any of your appliances that are known to be potential sources of carbon monoxide
- If you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning, then quickly seek medical attention, even if the symptoms are not severe, because even mild poisoning can dangerous
- Never run a car in the garage attached to your house regardless of whether the garage door is open or not
- Make sure your stove or fireplace is well vented
- Avoid using a gas stove for heating the house
Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Learning to quickly recognize the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning can prevent serious injury and be the difference between mild exposure and fatal poisoning.
Victims of mild carbon monoxide poisoning may undergo a full recovery, but those who have been exposed to dangerous levels of the poisonous gas and have suffered severe injuries may live the rest of their lives with the side effects.
The following are some of the common symptoms:
- Shortness of breath
- Feeling sick or being sick
- General weakness
- Chest and muscle pain
Some of the very dangerous and potentially long-term side effects of carbon monoxide poisoning include:
- Respiratory problems and other flu-like symptoms
- Brain injury (sometimes permanent brain damage)
- Lost earning capacity
- Organ damage
- Tremors and Parkinsonism
- Mental anguish leading to depression
- Memory loss
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- A severe decline in cognitive ability
Steps To Take if You Think You Are Experiencing Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
Victims of carbon monoxide poisoning can prevent serious injuries and fatalities by acting fast and knowing the right steps to take whenever they suspect exposure to the dangerous gas. As soon as you hear the detector sounding or you experience one of the early signs of carbon monoxide poisoning, such as difficulty breathing, do the following:
The longer you are exposed to carbon monoxide, the higher the chances of suffering brain damage, other serious injuries, and even death. This is why you need to get to fresh air immediately. Unlike carbon dioxide, it is very difficult to remove carbon monoxide from the body once it has been absorbed, so a quick escape is the best option.
- Call an Ambulance
Carbon monoxide kills in a very short time, which is why you have to call for help as soon as you can. The other option is to drive the victims to the hospital where they can receive emergency treatment, such as hyperbaric oxygen therapy.
- Stay With the Victim
There is not much you can do in terms of first aid when it comes to cases of carbon monoxide poisoning. After you have helped them to fresh air and called the ambulance the only thing left is to stay with the victim and reassure them that help is on the way.
How Can a Carbon Monoxide Lawyer Help You?
Our experienced carbon monoxide poisoning lawyers are there to help victims receive the justice that they deserve. We can help with the following:
- Determine Fault
After such a terrible incident that results in serious injuries or even death, someone has to be held liable. In some cases, property owners may try to escape legal liability, but we are here to stop that from happening and ensure that the accident victim gets the justice they deserve.
- Provide Legal Representation
If the case has to go to court, then we have brilliant trial lawyers who can provide you with legal counsel. Some situations can be very complicated, such as when dealing with a wrongful death case, and require an experienced attorney who knows the best way to take legal action.
- Win Proper Compensation
A personal injury case or wrongful death lawsuit can result in the victim being awarded economic damages and non-economic damages, such as lost wages, medical expenses, and a favorable settlement for the surviving spouse.
Recent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Cases
To further highlight the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning, here are a couple of examples of recent cases in Texas alone:
- In February 2021, 11 people lost their lives after desperately seeking warmth during a power outage. Many people brought charcoal stoves into their homes or ran cars in enclosed spaces which resulted in 1400 cases of carbon monoxide poisoning across the state.
- A San Antonio father and his two daughters tragically died from carbon monoxide poisoning in early June 2019. This happened after power was cut from the residence and the family decided to use a gasoline-powered generator for warmth.
Common Sources of Carbon Monoxide
A poor ventilation system is almost always part of the problem in cases of carbon monoxide poisoning. The following are the common sources of this deadly gas that you should be wary of:
- Oil and gas heaters
- Charcoal and gas grills
- Gasoline and diesel generators
- Gas-powered tools
- Water heaters
- Kitchen gas stoves
- Camp stoves
Home Test for Carbon Monoxide: Carbon Monoxide Detectors
The fact that carbon monoxide is a colorless and odorless gas makes it very difficult to detect using any other means except for carbon monoxide detectors. You have to make sure you have one installed in your household by your landlord or property manager, which is actually the legal requirement for most family homes.
There are other clues that you may see around your own home that may indicate that there is a carbon monoxide leak somewhere, such as:
- Brownish or yellow stains around appliances
- The burner flame looks yellow instead blue
- Soot or smoke lingering inside the home
- A pilot light that repeatedly goes out
However, it must be noted that a carbon monoxide detector is the only sure way of determining whether there are dangerous levels of the gas inside your home. If for any reason your property manager or landlord refuses to have one installed, then visit our law firm for a free consultation to discuss how to handle the situation.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Common Are Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Cases in San Antonio?
Carbon monoxide exposure and poisoning cases are on the rise in the city. Due to ever-increasing power outages caused by bad weather, these cases are now very common throughout Texas as a whole with, for example, more than 450 cases reported in 2021.
How Often Do These Cases Result in Death?
These cases do not usually result in death, although most of them do cause serious injuries and long-term disabilities.
How Can Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Be Prevented?
The best way to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning and ensure the safety of you and your loved ones is to make sure you have installed carbon monoxide detectors that have backup batteries inside your residence.
As one of the top personal injury law firms in Texas, we invite you to give us a call and schedule a free consultation if you suspect that you have been a victim of carbon monoxide poisoning. Our experienced team will help you with the recovery of damages that will cover medical care, lost wages, as well as pain and suffering. Give us a call today and let us fight for your fair compensation.