CORNER BROOK — There's no alternative to not having a carbon monoxide detector in your home.
"You have to go out and get one," said fire Chief Neville Wheaton of the Corner Brook Fire Department. "Every house should have one, not only the ones that are burning carbon-based fuels."
He said wood stoves don't tend to be the big offender that people think they are and there tends to be more of an issue with burning liquid fuel.
The more fuel-burning appliances you have, the more critical it becomes to have a detector, he says.
"It's a life-safety issue and you can not do without it."
That's a lesson four people near Brigus Junction learned the hard way earlier this week when they had to be treated for carbon monoxide poisoning caused by a leaky propane refrigerator in a cabin.
Wheaton said carbon monoxide is known as the silent killer because you can't see it and you can't smell it.
Exposure to carbon monoxide can result in headaches, flu-like symptoms, nausea and death.
Among the types of detectors available are the most familiar, the semi-conductor unit that plugs into a wall outlet and is often equipped with a battery backup and the self-contained battery powered biomimetic unit which reacts to carbon monoxide the same way your body does and sends an alarm.
Wheaton said a carbon monoxide detector should be placed near fuel burning appliances and recommends a second one be placed near the sleeping area.