Carbon monoxide (CO) is an odorless, tasteless gas produced when a carbon-based fuel is burned. CO exposure symptoms are often mistaken for seasickness or intoxication and include weakness, headaches, dizziness, and nausea. Exposure to low concentrations over a prolonged period or high concentrations can lead to death.
If you suspect CO poisoning, contact medical help immediately. Ventilate enclosed areas and move the affected person into fresh air; proceed with caution because you may also be in danger of carbon monoxide exposure.
As of May 1, 2017, all motorboats operating in Minnesota with an enclosed accommodation compartment must be equipped with a marine CO detection system.
Gasoline-powered motorboats with an enclosed occupancy compartment must also display three CO warning stickers: at the helm, at the stern, and in the entrance to any enclosed occupancy space.
For more details about Sophia’s Law, see the Minnesota DNR website.
Practicing Carbon Monoxide Safety in the Ice House
Improper ventilation and malfunctions in heating or cooking devices can cause deadly levels of CO. Install and maintain a CO alarm in your ice house to alert you of dangerous levels.