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News Releases

North Shore Gas

For Release: 02/07/2011

North Shore Gas Joins Local Municipalities to Bring Safety to the Community

Utility Holds Press Conference to Donate 600 CO Detectors

Chicago, IL - On Wednesday, February 9, North Shore Gas will hold a press conference to present 600 (200 per township) carbon monoxide (CO) detectors to the cities of Waukegan, Zion and North Chicago and Shields Townships. First Alert, through a partnership with North Shore Gas, matched the utility's donation of 300 CO detectors.

The press conference will take place at 8:30 a.m. at the Waukegan City Hall, 100 N. Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue. Andrea Danks, government and community relations representative, will present the CO detectors to the three townships on behalf of North Shore Gas. Representatives from the three townships along with their fire chiefs are expected to attend.

Two years ago, North Shore Gas was approached by Chief Ted Wilder of the North Chicago Fire Department with a request to provide carbon monoxide detectors. He was concerned that even though Illinois law requires detectors, residents who couldn't afford them would be at risk. This year the utility expanded the donation to include surrounding municipalities and other parts of Shields Township. The North Chicago Fire Department will host a giveaway to its residents on a first come first serve basis and will even deliver to those who are not able to get to the station.

The CO give-a-way is a just one of the North Shore Gas' efforts to promote carbon monoxide safety. Carbon monoxide, a colorless, odorless and tasteless poison, can come from any inadequately burned and vented fuel sources, including water heaters, furnaces, ranges/stoves, clothes dryers, grills, fireplaces and portable generators. The company says that with sub-zero temperatures expected for the next few days, furnaces may be working overtime to combat the freezing temperatures.

"It's extremely vital that residents have working CO detectors in their homes," says Torrence Hinton, manager of Operations for North Shore Gas. "Carbon monoxide detectors can save lives and they are required by Illinois law."

Hinton also stressed the need for residents to ensure that their heating equipment is in top operating condition and the importance of clearing the snow away from gas meters and regulators. "An improperly adjusted furnace or a blocked vent can cause CO to accumulate indoors," he says.

Prolonged exposure to CO fumes can lead to unconsciousness and even death. Early warning signs include headaches, dizziness, weakness, nausea and vomiting. If you encounter these danger signs or if your CO detector goes off, open windows and doors and evacuate everyone immediately. Call 911 from another location.

The utility company offers a few CO safety tips to customers:

  • Install CO detectors/alarms within 15 feet of each sleeping area.
  • Test CO detectors/alarms at least once a month; replace batteries at least twice a year and follow manufacturer's guidelines for the installation and maintenance of CO detectors.
  • CO alarms are not substitutes for smoke alarms. Know the difference between the sound of the smoke alarm and the CO alarm.
  • Have fuel-burning heating equipment (fireplaces, furnaces, water heaters, wood and coal stoves, space or portable heaters) and chimneys inspected yearly by a professional.

More CO tips as well as home safety tips can be found at www.northshoregasdelivery.com. In addition, North Shore Gas customers are eligible for a discount to purchase a First Alert CO detector. Details about the discount are available on the website.

About North Shore Gas

North Shore Gas is a regulated natural gas delivery company that serves 158,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in 54 communities in Northeastern Illinois. The company is a subsidiary of Integrys Energy Group, Inc. (NYSE: TEG). For more information on North Shore Gas, visit www.northshoregasdelivery.com.

For More Information, Contact:

  • Bonnie Johnson (Media)
    Manager, Public Relations
    312-240-4567
    312-907-7333 (Cell)