Most important of all, did you know carbon monoxide poisonings are preventable. Every boater should be aware of the risks associated with carbon monoxide – what it is; where it may accumulate; and the symptoms of CO poisoning.

Carbon Monoxide Poison


Safe-Boating Advocates: Help Save Lives and Share the Dangers of CO Poisonous Gas

carbon monoxide iconCarbon monoxide (CO) poisonous gas is generated by boat engines, cabin heaters, generators, and galley stoves. While the most prevalent source of CO is exhaust from engines and generators, it’s important to know that Carbon monoxide can accumulate anywhere in or around your boat.

Every boater and passenger should be aware of the risks associated with carbon monoxide —  learn all you can about CO, and teach everyone you know.

Start Here:

  • Although CO can be present without the smell of exhaust fumes, if you smell exhaust fumes, CO is certainly present! Take immediate action to dissipate these fumes and get strong airflow moving.
  • Maintain fresh air circulation throughout the boat at all times. Run exhaust blowers whenever the generator is operating.
  • We urge boaters to install marine carbon monoxide detectors in closed cabins and compartments.
  • Don’t discard symptoms which may seem similar to being intoxicated or sea sickness (nausea, weakness, dizziness, headache), these may be caused by CO poisoning. Again, strong moving air is CO’s enemy. Seek medical attention before symptoms worsen.
  • Never sit, teak surf, or hang on the back deck or swim platform while the engines are running. Teak surfing is NEVER a safe activity.
  • Stay more than a 20 foot distance while underway if wakeboarding, tubing or skiing.
  • For a full list of life-saving steps, visit: USCGboating/Carbon-Monoxide 

Access Sharable Resources

  • CO safety 4×9 with life-saving tips! Ask about printable copies for your community event.
  • Helpful check list for daily, monthly and yearly maintenance to keep everyone safe.
  • A printable FAQ section on CO from the CDC.
  • Schedule a free Vessel Safety Check. Remember: zero consequences if it doesn’t pass, and possibly a list of improvements you can’t live without, literally.  

See this infographic from our friends at DanBoater which conveys 5 ways to prevent CO poisoning on boats.  

infographic - 5 ways to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning on boats - dan-boater


Carbon Monoxide quote

Protect your family against Carbon Monoxide (CO)  poisoning. Stay off the back deck and the swim platforms while the engines are running. Download safety tips here. For more information, visit USCG boating.

We’ve provided a variety of advocate tools and outreach methods, choose what works best for you and your community.

  • Visit spread the word for easy outreach through personal social media outlets and boating forums.
  • Provide year-round education on all boating safety topics – download pamphlets, flyers, banners, and posters. Great event materials. Search by topic in the resource section.
  • Don’t know where to start?  Contact us. We’re happy to help.

To truly spread the Boat Live 365 message, please make a concerted effort to discuss and promote all of the “Serious Fun Topics” together, all year long.

Reference to any specific commercial product, process, or service, or the use of any trade, firm or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public, and does not constitute endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the U.S. Coast Guard.