Carbon monoxide poisoning from gasoline-powered engines: risk perception among Midwest flood victims (letter to editor).
Greife-AL; Goldenhar-LM; Fruend-E; Stock-A; Halperin-W
Am J Publ Health 1997 Mar; 87(3):466-467
A questionnaire was administered to convenience samples at several locations in St. Genevieve, Missouri, a flood damaged city, to determine the understanding of the residents there regarding the safety of gasoline powered engines. A response rate of 67% was obtained, with higher response rates coming at a senior citizen center and at churches. Of the 416 respondents, 84% correctly replied that it would be unsafe to use a gasoline powered engine inside with closed windows and doors. However, 26% incorrectly responded that it would be safe if there were an open window nearby. A full 54% incorrectly replied that it would be safe if windows and doors were open and an exhaust fan were running. The younger participants had a greater likelihood of having more inaccurate risk perceptions regarding the exposure to carbon-monoxide (630080) through the use of gasoline powered engines. The authors suggest that more attention be given to providing age specific risk information to inexperienced audiences likely to experience such exposures. Such exposures frequently occur during disaster cleanup operations where individuals are attempting tasks for which they are not prepared or trained. In this study 72% of the participants had not heard or seen any announcement of the hazards of gasoline powered equipment or their safe operation which had been provided by state and local health departments. Of those who had heard the information, more had heard the warnings on the radio and television than had read them in magazines and newspapers. These findings were similar to studies on farms where the risks associated with the use of gasoline powered equipment in enclosed spaces is frequently underestimated.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Publication; Air-quality; Toxic-gases; Combustion-engines; Exhaust-gases; Risk-factors; Indoor-air-pollution; Disaster-planning; Emergency-equipment; Indoor-environmental-quality
American Journal of Public Health