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The hidden danger of CO

Charlton false alarms points to safety issue

Recent CO alarms at Charlton Town Hall have raised awareness about the dangers of the emissions. Kevin Flanders. (click for larger version)
December 13, 2010
CHARLTON — Several town employees have been raising concerns about carbon monoxide at Town Hall.

Town Administrator Robin Craver said the issues were primarily in the north wing of the building.

"It's been more of an issue in the last few weeks," with the colder weather, she said. "People have said they felt effects."

"We've been there a couple times over the last couple of months testing carbon monoxide (CO) levels, which have been absolutely zero," said Fire Chief Charles Cloutier.

He noted staff members reported "an odor" — which would not be CO, since it is odorless — that seemed to be linked to the times the boiler turned on. To reduce the risk, the fire department purchased a few CO detectors for the offices in question and re-timed the boiler to start on Friday afternoon, after Town Hall closes.

Although the evidence seems to show CO isn't a big issue there, it can be a killer posing a heightened risk in the winter season.

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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