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CO Education Day set for April 15th

The special day was proclaimed nearly 7 years after a Woodstock family died from carbon monoxide poisoning.

WOODSTOCK - April 15th, will take on a new meaning in the City of Woodstock after City Councillors announced CO Education Day at last night's council meeting. The ceremony which featured Mayor Trevor Birtch declaring the new day as the Co-Chair from the Hawkins-Gignac Foundation for CO Education John Gignac was present. 

As the new day will be celebrated Gignac feels the government isn't doing enough to educate the public on harmful CO can be. "Well it is the silent killer, and it is also something that has slipped through the cracks.  Not a lot of people know about carbon monoxide they don't know what it is, how it effects them, and what they should do to protect themselves.  It is very important to educate the public due to it being the silent killer, and you need to get a carbon monoxide detector, it is the only way you'll know it is in your home."       

It has been nearly 7 years since the Hawkins Family was killed in Woodstock due to CO poisoning in their home which led to the formation of a law that mandated CO detectors in every residential area.  Another step was completed last night at City Council in hopes of this never to happen to a family again.  Fire Chief and Community Manager Coordinator for Woodstock Scott Tegler thinks it is imperative to have working CO detectors outside any sleeping areas. "The importance is public safety, we want to protect public safety as the City of Woodstock and make this event announced throughout the entire community.  We had a family that was close to myself, and close to a lot of my colleges that unfortunately passed away from CO poisoning.  I think people in this community understand the importance of having this protection device in their homes, now the next step is to take it forward to everyone else." 

As another major step in CO awareness was accomplished Gignac who was related to the Hawkins family is pleased the public is taking this matter very seriously.  "In Ontario now it is declared November 1st-8th is CO awareness week, and it is just like Fire prevention week,  we have got that in the bill, that is law now.  CO Awareness Day, I would love to see every community have one of their own just like Woodstock has declared April 15th.  We could have it on that day every year to remind people that you need to have CO detectors, and look after them."      

Other communities such as Brantford will recognize CO education day on April 15th.  Fire Chief Tegler commented that symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include light headiness, and nausea. It is also extremely important to check fuel fired appliances to make sure they are running efficiently.  

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