Recommendations from Camuzzi Gas Pampeana to prevent accidents and carbon monoxide poisoning

During 2023, the natural gas distributor has registered more than 50 cases of carbon monoxide poisoning in its concession area. However, these data only represent reported events, so there are surely many cases that were not reported and/or could not be verified.

In the majority of the accidents recorded, the types of appliances involved were heaters, followed by water heaters and stoves. Regarding the main causes that caused them, 85% of the cases detected were related to the combustion gas evacuation ducts of the devices.

Likewise, it was determined that the lack of ventilation grilles in the environments, their obstruction or insufficient ventilation, constituted complementary causes that favored the occurrence of the accidents in question.

Carbon monoxide is an invisible threat, a highly toxic and dangerous gas that has no color, taste or odor. It is generated as a result of incomplete combustion of the fuels that we normally use such as wood, coal, diesel or natural gas, when there is not enough oxygen available in the environment to achieve adequate combustion.

Mild poisoning can be confused with an upset stomach or the flu, due to the similarity of the symptoms: vomiting, dizziness, headache, tiredness, weakness, among others. The longer the time and the exposure, the symptoms worsen, lowering body temperature, blood pressure and pulse, and can lead to seizures, unconsciousness and even death.

For this reason, Camuzzi reinforces the importance of correct installation and maintenance of gas appliances, always in the hands of a licensed installer, and provides the following recommendations so that users can make safe use of the resource:

1- APPROPRIATE VERIFICATION: periodically verify, and after long periods of non-use, with licensed gas technicians, the operation of the gas appliances, their evacuation ducts and vents.

2- VENTILATION: maintain permanent ventilation of the rooms and verify that the ventilation grilles are not obstructed. Ensure that the gas evacuation ducts and chimneys are not obstructed or disconnected.

3- CORRECT USE: use each artifact for the purpose for which it was manufactured. It is a common and dangerous mistake to use the oven or stove for heating since they consume a lot of oxygen from the environment in a short time and were not designed for that purpose. In addition, it is important to keep the kitchen burners clean of liquids and food because this clogs the burners and generates poor combustion.

4- FLAME IDENTIFICATION: carefully observe the color of the flame, it should always be blue with transparent ends. A yellow or orange flame indicates appliance malfunction and the presence of carbon monoxide.

5- APPROPRIATE APPLIANCES: only balanced draft appliances can be installed in bedrooms and bathrooms. In those environments where open chamber appliances operate, permanent ventilation grilles are mandatory. Only devices approved by the Institutes endorsed by ENARGAS should be installed. Additionally, the devices must have a safety valve and be permanently installed by a licensed professional. The use of rubber hoses is not permitted given their high danger.

In the event of any emergency, users can contact the Camuzzi hotlines available 24 hours a day, every day of the year:

– Camuzzi Gas Pampeana: 0800-666-0810 / 0810-666-0810

– Camuzzi Gas del Sur: 0800-999-0810 / 0810-999-0810

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