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Warning About Carbon Monoxide, Storm Recovery Safety

Ruzanna Harutyunyan's picture

The recent Ice Storm reminds us that emergency situations can occur at any time and can significantly disrupt our daily activities and can have deadly consequences. At this time, the Ulster County Office for the Aging joins the New York State of Office for the Aging in providing assistance to help prevent problems associated with carbon monoxide poisoning and safety issues related to ice storm recovery.

Emergency response and relief is coordinated locally through your County's Emergency Management network and the Office for the Aging plays a critical role in coordinating with the local network to assure that the elderly's needs are addressed.

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At the State level, the New York State Office for the Aging coordinates the aging network's activities with the New York State Emergency Management Office. Many are impacted by a storm the magnitude of this Ice Storm, a coordinated effort at the local level is key to assuring that the needs of the vulnerable elderly are addressed.

The New York State Office of Emergency Management has produced a series of informational publications that are helpful in dealing with the aftermath of the Ice Storm. These publications are available to area seniors from the Office for the Aging. (These publications will also be available on the County website as an attachment to this Press Release). Helpful information will go a long way to preventing a future emergency event from becoming a tragedy.

In addition, the Office for the Aging will be working with their WRAP program coordinators, senior centers, and other key programs, who in turn will work with generator and wood stove vendors in this area to educate consumers regarding proper operation so that they can avoid death and sickness from carbon monoxide poisonings.

Apparently the warnings and instructions on these items are not adequate and special consumer education and safety efforts would be extremely helpful. In the Capital District three people have died thus far from generator operations and many more have sought hospital treatment. We urge you to help address this concern.