Perhaps you’ve heard that new keyless ignition systems are contributing to injuries and keyless ignition deaths. But you may not know how this happens: via carbon monoxide poisoning. Such harmful inhalation of toxic fumes can occur when an engine keeps running after a car is left unattended.

How Does Poisoning Occur?

This can happen with new keyless start systems, which enable drivers to start a car simply by pushing a button, and never having to insert a key. Instead, they have a “fob” on their keychain which, when inside the vehicle, enables the system to function.

That may sound convenient, but when it comes to turning off an engine, the new process allows for various mistakes. One is a driver’s failure to push the “off” button properly or sufficiently. Another is the driver forgetting completely that such a button is needed to turn off an engine. Or a driver may assume an engine is off, when it’s not, since so many engines today are almost silent.

Drivers being unaware that their car’s engine is still running is an enormous problem — and can lead to keyless ignition carbon monoxide poisoning.

What Is Carbon Monoxide?

Carbon monoxide is an especially dangerous gas that’s emitted by the exhaust of internal combustion engines, which are used on most vehicles. The gas, also known by its chemical name of CO, is tasteless, odorless and colorless and is a bit less dense than air, so it’s difficult to detect.

Such CO gas is extremely dangerous if not fatal to humans in concentrations of more than around 35 ppm, or parts per million.

In wide-open spaces, carbon monoxide dissipates into the atmosphere, where it contributes to so-called pollution but may not be immediately harmful. But in enclosed spaces, such as a garage, accumulations of carbon monoxide can be fatal to humans.

That includes situations when the garage is attached to a house, since the gas can seep from the garage into the house.

Keyless Ignition Poisoning

The Florida Department of Health reports that over 500 Americans die and thousands are injured yearly from inadvertent exposure to carbon monoxide. Many people must have emergency medical care, even if they survive.

Nearly 16,000 cases of carbon monoxide poisoning causing 39 deaths occurred in 2007, reported the American Association of Poison Control Centers (AAPCC). Some involved carbon monoxide poisoning caused by vehicles left running in garages attached to homes.

Some victims of keyless ignition accidents have died when a vehicle was accidentally left running in their garage overnight, and fumes then seeped into their home, poisoning them in their sleep.

Keyless Ignition Lawsuits

Families of victims can fight back with keyless ignition lawsuits against the automakers whose defective products injured or killed innocent Americans.

The Willis Law Firm can fight this battle for victims and their families, starting with a free legal review of your case. Notify our law firm today of your carbon monoxide poisoning case involving a keyless ignition device.

Lawsuits already are underway against manufacturers which have allowed deaths and injuries to occur without recalling their vehicles or warning the public. The Willis Law Firm stands ready to help you and others who are legally entitled to financial recovery.

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