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Expert explains how deadly carbon monoxide leaks can be avoided

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© 2017 Cox Media Group.

NEEDHAM, Mass. - Carbon monoxide scares, like the near-tragedy in Smithfield, Rhode Island, are a wake up call for most people.

A home heating expert spoke with FOX25 about carbon monoxide dangers and how to protect yourself and your family from a deadly leak.

Carbon monoxide is an odorless, colorless gas, but a simple detector can save your life.

Scott MacFarlane, of MacFarlane Energy, said people should have the detectors installed in basements, outside of bedrooms and in main living areas. Batteries should be replaced every year, and the device itself should be replaced every seven years.

A large number of carbon monoxide incidents take place between November and February, between the hours of 5 p.m. and 10 a.m. when temperatures are cold and people are heating their homes.

Landlords are required to install and maintain carbon monoxide detectors because of Nicole’s Law.

The law was named after Nicole Garofalo, who died 12 years ago when a heating vent in her house was blocked by snow drifts. That allowed deadly amounts of carbon monoxide to enter her home.

For more carbon monoxide safety tips, click here.