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Coast health authority warns of carbon monoxide poisoning as coldest months approach

Vancouver Coastal Health is warning you about carbon monoxide poisoning, especially as the province heads into the coldest months of the year.

They say this is because it is the time when people are most frequently indoors and when hospitals see an increase in poisoning.

Produced by burning gasoline, wood, propane, charcoal and other fossil fuels, carbon monoxide can become dangerous in improperly ventilated appliances and engines that burn fossil fuels in an enclosed space. The health authority adds the gas is odourless.

They add exposure can create only subtle symptoms and many people might not be aware they require care. Symptoms include headache, blurred vision, nausea, shortness of breath and/or confusion.

There are a few simple steps people can take to reduce their risk, according to VCH. This includes installing a carbon monoxide detector in your home or making sure your home furnace (if you have one) is checked by a professional every year.

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VCH says the BC Drug and Poison Information Centre gets around 350 exposure referrals each year. 

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