In the event of an extended power outage, particularly following hurricanes and other severe weather, having a generator at home can be a huge advantage. But if used improperly, the devices can seriously harm or kill unsuspecting families.
Carbon monoxide poisoning, electrocution and fire are all potentially fatal risks of misusing portable generators.
Carbon monoxide poisoning
Portable generators produce as much carbon monoxide as hundreds of cars and can kill a person within minutes, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
Carbon monoxide poisoning sends more than 20,000 people to the emergency room each year, according to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). This is why generators should never be operated anywhere inside a home, including in garages or basements.