In-home protection

Minnesota State Fire Marshal Bruce West displays a carbon monoxide detector. The device protects against accidental carbon monoxide poisoning, which kills more than 400 Americans each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

A Duluth man and his dog are dead after succumbing Thursday to carbon monoxide poisoning.

Staff with the St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office are using the death to remind people of the dangers of carbon monoxide, a colorless, odorless, tasteless gas produced by burning gasoline, wood, propane, charcoal or other fuel.

Micheal Steen, 54, was found unresponsive in Canosia Township by a friend, who sought help. Deputies and first responders determined that Steen and a family dog were both deceased inside of the residence.

At the time of the incident there were no carbon monoxide alarms sounding in the residence, but high levels were detected inside, reported the sheriff’s office.

In hopes of avoiding further tragedies over this winter, the St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office wants to remind residents to make sure they test their carbon monoxide detectors and replace them as needed during this time of year when homes are being heated again.

Improperly ventilated appliances and engines, particularly in a tightly sealed or enclosed space, may allow carbon monoxide to accumulate to dangerous levels. Carbon monoxide poisoning can cause tissue damage and death. Improperly installed or maintained appliances can also emit this gas.

If you suspect you may have a carbon monoxide leak or issue, contact your local fire department.

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