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Carbon Monoxide Alarm Campaign for Boat Owners

This page contains advice about buying a CO Alarm and resources for caravan and mobile home owners.


Many boat owners will be meticulous in the maintenance of their boats. They will be aware of the many safety issues around owning and caring for a boat and taking it out to sea. One danger a boat owner or sailor may not be aware of is the hazard of carbon monoxide poisoning in the cabin. This can be avoided with an audible carbon monoxide alarm or CO alarm.

The cabin of a boat can often be a small enclosed space, sometimes tightly closed off from the weather. A build up of deadly carbon monoxide gas could occur in certain circumstances, especially if appliances are not working properly or exhaust fumes are entering the cabin.

Any appliance of engine that burns fuels could be a source of risk if they are not working or ventilating properly, including:

  • The boat’s engine
  • Cookers and heaters
  • Generators

You should ensure that these items are serviced annually as a matter of routine.
Ventilation to the appliances and engine of the boat should never be covered up, even in the worst of weather and any chimney or exhaust pipe should be kept clear of blockages.

Carbon monoxide is odourless, invisible and deadly. Severe CO poisoning will kill quickly. Less severe poisoning can be permanently harmful and may cause symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, fatigue, weakness, sleeplessness and confusion.

Its presence in quantities sufficient to injure or kill can only be detected with a Carbon Monoxide Alarm or CO Detector. Portable audible alarms can be easily purchased and are effective in safe-guarding boat owners and sailors from this particular hazard. No boat with a cabin should be without one.

Remember, this is a risk that is easily and inexpensively avoided.

If in doubt you should take expert advice or seek emergency help.

Do Not Become a Victim of the Silent Killer

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