Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


Carbon Monoxide(CO) is an odorless, colorless, and toxic gas. Carbon Monoxide fumes are impossible to see, taste, or smell. Carbon Monoxide can kill you before you are aware it is in your home. At lower levels of exposure, CO causes mild effects that are often mistaken for the flu. These symptoms include headaches, dizziness, disorientation, nausea and fatigue. The effects of CO exposure can vary greatly from person to person depending on age, overall health, and the concentration and length of exposure.

Potential Sources of Carbon Monoxide (CO):

  • Unvented kerosene and gas space heaters
  • Leaking chimneys and furnaces
  • Back-drafting from furnaces
  • Gas water heaters
  • Wood stoves
  • Fireplace
  • Gas stoves
  • Generators and other gasoline powered equipment
  • Automobile exhaust from attached garages
  • Tobacco smoke

Incomplete oxidation during combustion in gas ranges and unvented gas or kerosene heaters may cause high concentrations of CO in indoor air. Worn or poorly adjusted and maintained combustion devices (e.g., boilers, furnaces) can be significant sources, or if the flue is improperly sized, blocked, disconnected, or is leaking. Auto, truck, or bus exhaust from attached garages, nearby roads, or parking areas can also be a source.

Health Effects of Carbon Monoxide:

At low concentrations, fatigue in healthy people and chest pain in people with heart disease. At higher concentrations, impaired vision and coordination; headaches; dizziness; confusion; nausea. Can cause flu-like symptoms that clear up after leaving home. Fatal at very high concentrations. Acute effects are due to the formation of carboxyhemoglobin in the blood, which inhibits oxygen intake. At moderate concentrations, angina, impaired vision, and reduced brain function may result. At higher concentrations, CO exposure can be fatal.

Carbon Monoxide Levels In The Home:

Average levels in homes without gas stoves vary from 0.5 to 5 parts per million(ppm). Levels near properly adjusted gas stoves are often 5 to 15 ppm and those near poorly adjusted stoves may be 30 ppm or higher. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recommends that every home should have a carbon monoxide (CO) alarm. CPSC also urges consumers to have a professional inspection of all fuel burning appliances, including:

  • Furnaces
  • Stoves
  • Fireplaces
  • Clothes dryers
  • Water heaters
  • Space heaters

to detect deadly carbon monoxide leaks. CPSC recommends that every home should have at least one CO alarm that meets the requirements of the most recent Underwriters Laboratories(UL) 2034 standard or International Approval Services 6-96 standard. http://www.cpsc.gov/safety-education/safety-education-centers/carbon-monoxide-information-center/

Steps To Reduce Exposure To Carbon Monoxide:

It is most important to be sure combustion equipment is maintained and properly adjusted. Vehicular use should be carefully managed adjacent to buildings and in vocational programs. Additional ventilation can be used as a temporary measure when high levels of CO are expected for short periods of time.

  • Keep gas appliances properly adjusted.
  • Consider purchasing a vented space heater when replacing an unvented one.
  • Use proper fuel in kerosene space heaters.
  • Install and use an exhaust fan vented to outdoors over gas stoves.
  • Open flues when fireplaces are in use.
  • Choose properly sized wood stoves that are certified to meet EPA emission standards. Make certain that doors on all wood stoves fit tightly.
  • Have a trained professional inspect, clean, and tune-up central heating system (furnaces, flues, and chimneys) annually. Repair any leaks promptly.
  • Do not idle the car inside garage.

What Do You Do In The Event of a Carbon Monoxide Emergency?

  • Immediately get OUT of the contaminated environment and into fresh air.
  • Call your local Fire Department immediately.
  • Do not try to go back into the contaminated environment to retrieve items or to attempt rescue of others inside.
  • At higher levels Carbon Monoxide and overcome you quickly, resulting in confusion, unconsciousness and/or death. Special breathing apparatus like that used by firefighters must be worn when entering these environments.

Additional Resources:

To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury, call the Consumer Product Safety Commission's (CPSC) hotline.

  • Phone: (800) 638-2772
  • Teletypewriter: (800) 638-8270

To obtain recall information from CPSC visit: www.cpsc.gov

To report product hazards send an e-mail to info@cpsc.gov

To learn more about Carbon Monoxide visit the EPA's Carbon Monoxide page at www.epa.gov/iaq/co.html

A smoke alarm is the best early fire detection device available to the average homeowner. With properly placed and maintained smoke detectors you increase your chances of survival by 50%.

Most residential fire deaths occur between 11 P.M. and 7 A.M. This is the time of greatest danger, when people are asleep. The primary killer is smoke and poisonous gases which overcome victims as they sleep. From the time a fire breaks out there is a limited amount of time that a person has to escape. With the early warning of a smoke detector, you can be awakened during the early stages of a fire while escape is still possible.

Smoke Detector Q & A:

Q. How much does a smoke detectors cost?
A. Most range in price from $5 to $20.

Q. What Kind of Smoke Alarm Should I Buy?
A. Both battery-powered and house current-powered smoke detectors do a good job. Make sure the one you choose has been tested by a nationally-recognized testing laboratory.

Q. How Many Smoke Alarms Do I Need?
A. There should be at least one detector on every floor of the house (except the attic unless it is used for sleeping space). Additional detectors will increase the chance of early detection.

Q. Where should I place Smoke Alarms?
A. Smoke detectors should be placed near bedrooms either on the ceiling, at least 6 to 12 inches away from the wall, or on the wall, 6 to 12 inches down from the ceiling. Take care to keep the detector away from drafts created by fans or air ducts. This allows the detector to sense the smoke as it approaches the sleeping area.

Q. How Do I Install A Smoke Alarm
A. Battery-operated detectors can be attached directly to the ceiling or wall. Wired-in electric detectors are somewhat more difficult to install and may require an electrician.

Q. What Maintenance Do Smoke Alarms Require?
A. Test the detector at least monthly by pushing the test button. Once a year vacuum the dust from alarm air vents. Replace batteries when you adjust your time for daylight savings each Spring and Fall.

Q. Is There Anything Else I Should Do Once I Install Smoke Detectors?
A. Yes! Hold practice drills with your whole family so they will know what to do if your detector ever alerts you of an emergency

Many lives have been lost simply because people were not prepared to deal with accidental fires. In fact, it is estimated that less that 5% of the nation's homes have fire extinguishers.

Fire extinguishers are considered first-aid equipment for controlling and putting out small fires before they become too large. However, they are no substitute for the fire department in the event of a large or major blaze.

Having the proper fire extinguisher, as well as knowing how to use it and when not to use it, is important in safeguarding your household. Selecting the proper extinguisher for your home is as simple as A-B-C. Make sure that all adult family members know how to use fire extinguishers. A unit with a gauge will enable you to check for enough pressure to do the job effectively. Most home units are disposable. Therefore, never expel the home extinguisher to see if it works. Hold practice fire drills so everyone knows how to escape a fire.

Below are some frequently asked questions concerning Recreational Fires within the City of Ravenna. If you still have questions concerning a recreational fire, either planned or ongoing, please don't hesitate to call the Fire Department at 330-297-5738.

  • Q: Are recreational fires permitted in Ravenna?
    • YES. Open burning is allowed for the following purposes in Ravenna without permission from the Ohio EPA: Cooking for human consumption.Heating tar, welding, acetylene torches, highway safety flares, heating for warmth of outdoor worker, smudge pots and similar occupational needs.

  • Q: If I want a cooking fire in my yard, are there any restrictions?
    • YES. All cooking fires must meet the following requirements of the Ohio Fire Code and Open Burning Ordinance of the City of Ravenna. The location of the fire must be aleast fifty (50) feet from any stucture or motor vehicle on adjacent property and provisions must be made to prevent the spread of fire to within fifty (50) feet of a structure or motor vehicle.Fire in approved containers shall be permitted provided they are at least fifteen (15) feet from any structure.Use only dry wood or charcoal for fuel.The fire shall be constantly attended by a competent person until the fire is extinguished. Fire extinguishing equipment shall be readily available. A garden hose is fine.The fire shall be limited in size to three (3) feet by three (3) feet.

  • Q: May I have a bon fire?
    • YES. Open burning is also permitted with prior notification to the Ohio EPA (330.375.2480), for the following, however the fire cannot be used for waste disposal purposes. Ceremonial purposes. The fire shall be less than five (5) feet in dimension and shall burn no longer than three (3) hours)Prevention and control of disease or pest.Recognized silviculture, range or wildlife management.

  • Q: May I burn trash or refuse?
    • No. No person shall burn any refuse, rubbish, waste or other material within the City of Ravenna.

  • Q: If my neighbors complain will the fire department investigate?
    • YES. The fire department will investigate all complaints of open burning. Provided the fire complies with the requirements for a cooking fire it will be permitted to burn. The fire department will prohibit open burning that is offensive or objectionable due to smoke or odor emissions when atmospheric conditions make such fires hazardous or endangering to persons.

  • Q: Could I be cited for my fire?
    • YES. If you do not follow the requirements of the Open Burning Ordinance you could be cited.

The Ravenna City Fire Department offers free blood pressure checks on a walk in basis at the Fire Station located at 214 Park Way. No appointment is necessary

What is "Blood Pressure"?

Blood pressure is the pressure of the blood against the walls of the arteries.

Blood pressure results from two forces. One is created by the heart as it pumps blood into the arteries and through the circulatory system. The other is the force of the arteries as they resist the blood flow.

What Do Blood Pressure Numbers Mean?

  • Blood pressure is expressed in a two number system, such as 120/80 - or "one twenty over eighty".
  • The systolic pressure is always stated first. For example: 118/76 (118 over 76); systolic = 118, diastolic = 76.
  • The higher (systolic) number represents the pressure while the heart contracts to pump blood to the body.
  • The lower (diastolic) number represents the pressure when the heart relaxes between beats.

What is a 'normal' blood pressure?

  • Blood pressure below 120 over 80 mmHg (millimeters of mercury) is considered optimal for adults.
  • A systolic pressure of 120 to 139 mmHg or a diastolic pressure of 80 to 89 mmHg is considered "prehypertension" and needs to be watched carefully.
  • A blood pressure reading of 140 over 90 or higher is considered elevated (high).
  • These guidelines change as research sheds new light on our cardiovascular system. Always check with your doctor for the most current information about blood pressure and other health concerns.

How can I tell if I have High Blood Pressure?

High blood pressure usually has no symptoms. In fact, many people have high blood pressure for years without knowing it. That's why it's called the "silent killer." Hypertension is the medical term for high blood pressure. It doesn't refer to being tense, nervous or hyperactive. You can be a calm, relaxed person and still have high blood pressure.

A single elevated blood pressure reading doesn't mean you have high blood pressure, but it's a sign that further observation is required. Ask your doctor how often to check it or have it checked. Certain diseases, such as kidney disease, can cause high blood pressure. In 90 to 95 percent of cases, the cause of high blood pressure is unknown.

Where can I find additional information?

  • Your Doctor is the best resource if you have concerns or questions concerning your blood pressure.
  • Additional information can be found at the American Heart Association's Web Site located at www.americanheart.org