Drinks dispense towers are often found in restaurants, specifically fast food restaurants. These dispense systems use CO2 gas to carbonate the fizzy drinks on site before they are served to customers. There is always a risk that CO2 will leak from the cylinder it is stored on or from the drinks machine itself, as the gas is piped into it.
CO2 can also be used to dispense beer or to push it along beer lines to draft pumps.
A CO2 monitor will detect a leak and notify those working in the area that there was a problem. The risk can then be dealt with safely and quickly to reduce the more harmful effects associated with CO2 exposure.
What is a CO2 monitor?
A CO2 monitorwill detect levels of CO2 in the atmosphere using sensor technology. Devices can be installed as a permanent fixture or worn as a portable unit, if the person is visiting multiple sites like a beverage gas delivery driver visiting restaurants, bars, fast food outlets, stadiums and theatres where they may not know if fixed CO2 monitors are installed.
A fixed CO2 monitor will usually have a central unit or somewhere to display gas levels, a sensor unit to detect the gas and one or more alarm units to notify those in the area of a leak.
We recommend that an alarm unit is also placed outside the room where CO2 gas is stored, as well as inside to warn people before they enter a risk area that there is a problem.
The device should have audible and visual alarms and must be able to alarm at specific set points to comply with health and safety standards and fire marshall requirements.
What happens if you are exposed to CO2?
CO2 exists naturally in the atmosphere at very low levels, however if these levels increase due to a leak it can quickly start to cause harmful effects on those working in that area.
Being exposed to increased levels of CO2 can cause symptoms including dizziness, increased heart rate, nausea, confusion and shortness of breath. If the level of CO2 increases further, symptoms can include unconsciousness, tremors and eventually death by carbon dioxide toxicity.
Carbon dioxide poisoning results in a condition called hypercapnia or hypercarbia this will actually kill a person before asphyxiation, which occurs due to the gas replacing levels of oxygen in the atmosphere.
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