If you have read any of our previous blogs on carbon dioxide (CO2), you will understand how important it is to have CO2 monitors in areas where you store or use this type of gas.
Unfortunately there are still establishments such as restaurants which fail to use them, and in one recent incident, it was proven just how worthwhile they really are.
On 5 August, a group of firefighters were getting dinner at the Roy Rogers in Burtonsville, Maryland.
They were wearing their uniform, which included a chemical detector, and at around 5pm, these detectors started to alarm and make noise.
They asked the employees if they were having problems, but they assured them that everything was okay.
The firefighters went outside to clear the detectors with fresh air, but as soon as they walked back in the alarms sounded again.
They instantly reacted to the second alarm by evacuating the restaurant and calling Montgomery County fire crews to the scene.
When the crew arrived they confirmed there was a CO2 leak in the restaurant and traced it to a soda machine.
Carbon dioxide is an essential gas used to carbonate soft drinks and beer.
The level of CO2 which occurs naturally in the atmosphere is harmless as it only makes up 0.04% of the atmosphere. If this level increases it can cause several effects to your body including deeper breathing, reduced hearing, headaches, and an increase in blood pressure and pulse rate.
Once it reaches above 10%, CO2 exposure can lead to unconsciousness, asphyxiation and ultimately death.
As a result of the leak in the restaurant, fourteen people were evaluated for CO2 exposure and four employees were taken to an area hospital for treatment.
However, if the firefighters had not been present with their detectors, the symptoms from exposure to carbon dioxide could have been much worse and possibly fatal.
To ensure this does not happen, Analox manufacture the Ax60, a wall mountable CO2 detector designed specifically for the hospitality and beverage industry. The Ax60 has multiple location options for alarm and sensor units, connected to a central display, and gives warning of an increase in CO2 by offering three levels of alarm.
Each alarm unit includes an audible sounder and a high-intensity LED strobe light which is perfect for warning of danger in noisy environments.