Forgetting To Turn Off the Vehicle in Your Garage
As Coral Springs personal injury lawyers who have handled carbon monoxide poisoning cases, we are familiar with the recent rise in carbon monoxide poisonings and fatalities in Florida since 2009. Several stories regarding idling vehicles inadvertently left running in people’s garages have, unfortunately, made headlines over the past two years.
In June 2011, at least two serious carbon monoxide cases occurred in Florida, and one in North Carolina. The common link to all three: Vehicles left running in home garages.
In Tampa, Florida on June 13th, 2011, seven people suffered carbon monoxide poisoning due to an SUV left running in a garage with the door closed.
In Delray Beach, Florida on June 21st, 2011 an elderly woman was hospitalized for carbon monoxide poisoning after firefighters found a car with its engine running in the garage of her duplex home. Thankfully, the carbon monoxide alarm in her neighbors’ home sounded, and the neighbors called for help.
In Charlotte, North Carolina in June of this year, a car left running in a house garage is blamed for another carbon monoxide poisoning case. Police rescued a couple in their 80s, who were taken to the hospital.
These three cases highlight why a car left running in a closed garage can be so dangerous. Reasons people may leave their engines running could be due to distraction, quiet engines, or simply not realizing the car was left running. In some cases, however, keyless entry vehicles are to blame for fatal carbon monoxide poisonings.
Two separate personal injury lawsuits have been brought against Toyota for carbon monoxide poisoning deaths linked to vehicles with remote control key fobs.
In February of 2009, a New York couple suffered carbon monoxide poisoning after a Toyota was left idling in a home garage. Mary Rivera, who suffered brain damage and whose partner died from carbon monoxide poisoning, has sued Toyota for compensation.
In the summer of 2010, a woman from Boca Raton, Florida, suffered carbon monoxide poisoning and died after leaving her Lexus IS 250 running in her home garage. The victim’s mother has filed a lawsuit against Toyota, the manufacturer of Lexus vehicles, alleging negligence regarding its keyless entry system.
Carbon monoxide (CO) is commonly known as the “silent killer” because it’s an invisible, toxic gas with no scent. CO deprives the body of oxygen and can kill someone very quickly. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, an estimated 170 people on average die every year from carbon monoxide poisoning in the U.S. This number does not include deaths from automotive products.
An important method of prevention against carbon monoxide poisoning is to install CO detectors in your home. According to a recent survey by a manufacturer of carbon monoxide detectors, 90% of U.S. homes don’t have the recommended number of CO detectors installed, and 40% of homes don’t have any working CO detectors.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends having a minimum of one carbon monoxide detector on each floor of a home, plus one in or around each bedroom. To learn more, visit the NFPA website at www.nfpa.org.
Our firm represented a Boca Raton family in a wrongful death lawsuit regarding the carbon monoxide poisoning of their young daughter. This particular case involved a vehicle that was left running in a home garage during a sleepover at a friend’s house.
Please refer to our carbon monoxide poisoning section on our website for more information on this topic, including tips on how to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
If you or a loved one has suffered carbon monoxide poisoning due to the negligence of another person, product, or business, contact a personal injury lawyer with experience handling carbon monoxide cases. A carbon monoxide attorney will help you obtain the compensation you may be entitled to for your claim.
The carbon monoxide lawyers at Law Offices Cytryn & Velazquez will answer your questions and explain your rights. Call us for a free consultation at 954-255-7000 or toll-free at 1-877-853-7466.