The Silent Killer, Carbon Monoxide

Lisa Pfeifer – OSU Ag Safety and Health Education Coordinator

Ohio temperatures have dipped into winter and climbed right back out into early spring over these last few weeks, but temps are forecasted to flatten out on the colder side throughout the next month and the heat is likely to stay on. With heating season comes the threat of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. It is key to remember you can’t smell, taste, or see carbon monoxide! To be alerted of CO, install a battery-operated CO detector and check or replace the battery when you change the time on your clocks each spring and fall. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state, “Although CO poisoning can be prevented, each year, approximately 438 people in the U.S. die as a result of unintentional, non-fire related exposure to this toxic gas.” The following infographic released for a government health campaign in Canada, highlights some important items to remember about carbon monoxide:

For additional information about Nonvented Portable Heaters, often used on the farm or in shop areas, find our factsheet at

Please visit for information about the OSU Agricultural Safety and Health Program or contact Lisa Pfeifer at or 614-292-9455.