The Lead Public Information Officer for Florida’s Division of Emergency Management, Mike Stone, confirmed the first death in the state related to Tropical Storm Fay. John Robert Graves, 54, died of carbon monoxide poisoning while testing a generator inside his garage on Saturday in preparation for Tropical Storm Fay. The death occurred in Highlands County, Florida.
This is a reminder that the wind, rain, storm surge and tornado hazards are not the only causes of loss of life in tropical cyclones. Indirect deaths, not directly related to the hazards, can occur. These indirect deaths are usually preventable.
Portable generators should be placed in a well-ventilated area, NEVER inside a home including garages. You cannot see or smell carbon monixide. If you start to feel sick, dizzy or weak while using a generator, get outside to fresh air immediately.