Misuse Of Portable Radiant Gas Heaters Poses Carbon Monoxide Threat To Campers

Hunting...fishing... camping...the last thing you might worry about when you're enjoying fall and winter activities in the great outdoors is the danger of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. But beware! Outdoor enthusiasts using portable gas heaters in ways not intended -- i.e., in unventilated, enclosed spaces such as tents, RV's, campers, vehicles, and ice fishing shanties --face the possibility of sickness or death from CO poisoning.

Portable radiant gas heaters are great for taking the chill out of cold days in lieu of (or in addition to) a campfire; for use under a fly; or, with some models, to use for cooking. But since these heaters are designed for outside, freely ventilated spaces, inside use could place campers at high risk for carbon monoxide poisoning.

Particularly vulnerable are those who operate a radiant gas heater in their tent or -- worse yet -- in a truck camper or Recreational Vehicle (RV), then go to sleep. Carbon monoxide, which is tasteless, odorless and colorless, can build to lethal levels in these unventilated spaces.

Just like you would not cook with a gas grill inside a closed garage, you should not heat with a portable radiant gas heater, regardless of the size, inside a shanty, closed RV or tent, even "breathable" tents which are still vulnerable to CO buildup. Most importantly, campers should never go to sleep while operating a portable radiant gas heater inside.

Of particular concern are small, lightweight portable gas heaters used primarily by hunters and fishermen while camping.

However, the warning for everyone, including outdoor campers, is: Using a portable radiant gas heater inside a tent, RV, camper, vehicle, shelter or other enclosed space places you at risk for carbon monoxide poisoning...and the consequences of unseen carbon monoxide could be fatal. Please camp safely and use portable radiant gas heaters outside.

For more information about the safe use of portable radiant gas heaters, contact the Portable Radiant Heater Safety News Bureau, P.O. Box 45002-0002, Cleveland, Ohio 44145 or call toll-free 1-888-CAMPHTR (226-7487).(NAPSI)

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