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Boats and Carbon Monoxide

Carbon monoxide

Boating is a popular activity in the great state of Florida with our expanse of ocean and other waterways to enjoy. While boating has risks, one that many do not recognize is carbon monoxide poisoning. Even when outdoors, this tasteless, odorless gas can pose a risk of injury and death to boaters, especially when it occurs from unexpected sources within the boat’s construction.

Carbon monoxide is known as a silent killer, undetectable and quick to cause harm to the human body. Most warnings about carbon monoxide surround indoor inhalation in homes and garages, but boaters should also be aware of the dangers. The combustion engines of boats emit carbon monoxide, which can enter the cabin and become toxic. It can also be poisonous when inhaled outdoors in large concentrations.

Symptoms of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

Carbon monoxide poisoning can occur in minutes, causing deprivation of oxygen to the brain. When inhaled in consistent, large amounts, symptoms can quickly occur and should never be ignored. Unfortunately, many of the symptoms can be mistaken as effects from other common boating afflictions; they may mimic the symptoms of motion sickness, heat stroke or too much alcohol consumption. Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Fatigue
  • Confusion

A boater may lay down to rest because they have a headache or feel nauseous, thinking it is due to motion sickness or excessive time in the sun, not realizing they are inhaling too much carbon monoxide. This can make carbon monoxide poisoning extremely dangerous when boating as the victim may not remove themselves from the danger point. According to the CDC, over 800 carbon monoxide poisoning injuries and over 140 deaths have occurred on boats since 2000.

Boater Carbon Monoxide Lawsuits

While many boating carbon monoxide poisonings occur from exhaust fumes when docked or leaking inside to the cabin, some occur due to issues in the boat’s construction. Unsafe designs in equipment on boats can lead to unintentional exposure to deadly carbon monoxide that can cause death and injury. When the boat manufacturer is to blame, a personal injury lawsuit may be the best option to receive compensation for injuries and prevent further injuries.

At Tison Law Group, we work diligently to fight for our clients who have been injured due to dangerous products produced by manufacturers. If you or a loved one has been injured from carbon monoxide poisoning while boating due to a defect in the boat’s construction or safety equipment, contact our office for a free consultation to discuss your case.

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