Thursday, February 11, 2016

Carbon dioxide deaths due to soda fountain cylinder leaks

image by Mikael Häggström
There will be changes to how building codes handle the location, monitoring and ventilation of carbon dioxide cylinder storage.  The changes are the result of fatalities at several locations where  carbon dioxide cylinders were venting into small spaces.  The carbon dioxide displaced the oxygen and death resulted.  For small restaurants, the cylinders can be located outside the building.  This may be a concern for larger buildings where the cylinders can not be stored outside.

Carbon dioxide should not be confused with carbon monoxide which is produced by incomplete combustion.  According to US OSHA the carbon monoxide 8 hour exposure limit is 50 ppm.  The eight hour exposure limit for carbon dioxide is 5,000 ppm.

Carbon dioxide connections inside an enclosure at a Sanford Florida McDonald's restaurants in January of 2005 led to the death of two individuals - Orlando Sentinel