Issue No. 44                                                                               January 2016

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a poisonous, odorless gas that can make a person feel sick and can be deadly. Home heating and cooking devices that burn fuel can be sources of carbon monoxide. 

On July 1, 2010, the Lofgren and Zander Memorial Act (Oregon Revised Statutes, 90.317) went into effect throughout Oregon, requiring landlords to ensure their properties have one or more properly functioning carbon monoxide (CO) alarms in or near all sleeping areas when they enter into new rental agreements. Since then, Oregon has increased the scope of the legislation to require landlords to install CO alarms in all their properties, regardless of lease status. Oregon also now requires sellers of any residence, including one- and two-family homes, to install CO alarms. 

Even if the law does not pertain to your specific type of dwelling, Portland Fire & Rescue urges everyone to be safe and install CO alarms now. 

  • CO alarms should be installed outside each sleeping area. Install alarms on every level of the home. It is best to use interconnected alarms. When one sounds, all interconnected CO alarms in the home will sound.
  • Follow the instructions on the package to properly install the CO alarm.
  • Test CO alarms at least once a month.
  • Replace CO alarms according to the instructions on the package. 
  • CO alarms that were installed when the Oregon law passed requiring them in homes are nearing the end of their useful life. Portland Fire & Rescue would like to remind residents to be safe and replace them.
  • Know the sounds the CO alarm makes. It will sound if CO is detected. It will make a different sound if the battery is low.
  • If the CO alarm sounds, you must get fresh air. Move outdoors, by an open window or near an open door. Make sure everyone in the home gets to fresh air. Call 9-1-1 for Portland Fire & Rescue from a fresh air location. Stay there until help arrives. 
  • When warming a vehicle, move it out of the garage. Do not run a fueled engine indoors, even if garage doors are open.
  • Clear all debris from dryer, furnace, stove, and fireplace vents.
  • A generator should be used outdoors. Use in a well-ventilated location away from windows, doors, and vent openings. 
  • Gas or charcoal grills can produce CO. Only use them outside.
  • Have heating equipment and chimneys inspected by a professional every year before cold weather sets in.
  • Open the damper when using a fireplace for adequate ventilation.
  • Never use your oven or stove to heat your home. 
(Source: NFPA)
Portland Students Compete In 
Fire Safety Coloring Contest

Portland students took part in a coloring contest sponsored by Portland Fire & Rescue. Firefighters visited area schools and explained safety messages students should cover, such as "Hear a Beep Where You Sleep: Every Bedroom Needs a Working Smoke Alarm," "Fire Catches, So Don't Play with Matches," and "Fireworks Facts." Students got creative and Fire Chief Erin Janssens picked the winning submissions. All the winners were awarded a prize. Here are the winning entries...

In recognition of Burn Awareness Week (February 1 - 7th), Portland Fire & Rescue would like to you remind you that a scald injury can happen at any age. Children, older adults and people with disabilities are especially at risk. Hot liquids from bath water, hot coffee and even microwaved soup can cause devastating injuries. Scald burns are the second cause of all burn injuries. 

  • Teach children that hot things can burn. Install anti-scald devices on tub faucets and shower heads.
  • Always supervise a child in or near a bathtub.
  • Test the water at the faucet. It should be less that 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius).
  • Before placing a child in the bath or getting in the bath yourself, test the water.
  • Test the water by moving your hand, wrist and forearm through the water. The water should feel warm, not hot, to the touch.
  • Place hot liquids and foods in the center of a table or toward the back of a counter.
  • Have a "kid-free zone" of at lease 3 feet around the stove and areas where hot food or drink is prepared or carried.
  • Open microwaved food slowly, away from the face.
  • Never hold a child while you are cooking, drinking a hot liquid, or carrying hot foods or liquids.
  • Never heat a baby bottle in a microwave oven. Heat baby bottles in warm water from the faucet.
  • Allow microwaved food to cool before eating.
  • Choose prepackaged soups whose containers have a wide base or, to avoid the possibility of a spill, pour the soup into a traditional bowl after heating.
(Source: American Burn Association, NFPA)
PF&R in the News


About PF&R

Portland's fire service history began in the spring of 1851, with the founding of the Pioneer Engine Company, the same year the City of Portland was officially incorporated. No more than a bucket brigade, it was a volunteer force of 37 fire fighters wearing red shirts with a single hand pump.
Today, Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) is the largest fire and emergency services provider in the State of Oregon with 725 employees and serves a population of 610,000. In 2014, PF&R responded to 74,143 emergency incidents.
Portland Fire & Rescue
55 SW Ash St
Portland, Oregon 97204
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