Portable Generator Manufacturers' Association Announces Breakthrough Technology to Address Carbon Monoxide Hazard in Updated Standard

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Revisions to ANSI/PGMA G300 Standard include breakthrough automatic shut-down technology for optimal safety. The new Standard will help minimize portable generator risks and misuse.

"We are all working to prevent deaths and injuries related to misuse of the product from occurring,"--Susan Orenga, Executive Director of PGMA.

The Portable Generator Manufacturers' Association (PGMA) is proposing revisions to the ANSI/PGMA G300 Standard which include adding new requirements related to carbon monoxide (CO) when portable generators are misused.

Working closely with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the PGMA held a series of technical summits to identify the best overall solution to address the hazards posed by improper use of portable generators. The Association, after significant research, testing, and simulation, has recommended to the CPSC that the best option is to automatically shut down the generator when it senses carbon monoxide levels exceed established trigger levels. Through its member testing and research, PGMA concludes:

  • Auto-shutdown stops the generator from running when carbon monoxide begins to accumulate as a result of improper operation in enclosed spaces. All data sources predict that auto-shutdown will result in a significant reduction in fatalities and injuries related to the misuse of the product by stopping the source of the carbon monoxide.
  • Auto-shutdown benefits consumers by indicating proper locations to operate the generator.
  • The auto-shutdown solution is affordable which will keep portable power available for most consumers.

“We are all working to prevent deaths and injuries related to misuse of the product from occurring,” said Susan Orenga, executive director of PGMA. “The PGMA has taken a two pronged approach—we have engaged in major education and awareness campaigns to alert generator users to the dangers of improper use. Simultaneously, our member companies have invested in, researched, and tested technical solutions that automatically shut down a generator if the level of carbon monoxide reaches established trigger levels. This is a reliable, impactful, affordable, and insightful technological advancement.”

Simulation analysis, validated by empirical testing of the PGMA proposed approach, showed that automatic shutdown will prevent a significant majority of incidents related to carbon monoxide poisoning due to improper use.

The revised ANSI/PGMA G300 standard will include requirements that automatically shuts the generator down when carbon monoxide accumulates. The revision is scheduled to be introduced for ANSI approval by the end of 2017. Once enacted, it will usher in a new era of portable generator safety, one that is a significant advance in the effort to prevent the danger of carbon monoxide poisoning due to generator misuse.

About Portable Generator Manufacturers’ Association
The Portable Generator Manufacturers’ Association (PGMA) is a trade association that seeks to develop and influence safety and performance standards for the portable generator industry and its products. Formed in 2009, PGMA members include the major manufacturers of portable generators sold in North America including A-iPower, American Honda Motor Co., Briggs & Stratton Corporation, Champion Power Equipment, Generac Power Systems, GenTent Safety Canopies (Associate Member) Wacker Neuson Production Americas LLC and Yamaha Motor Corp USA.

PGMA is dedicated to the safe use of portable generators. Facts on portable generator safety include:

  • Keep generators outdoors. Do not use portable generators inside homes, tents, campers or partially enclosed spaces.
  • Always direct portable generator engine exhaust away from occupied structures and if possible downwind. Pointing the exhaust away from occupied structures or your campsite, hunting or fishing location is critical to avoid carbon monoxide accumulating in occupied spaces.
  • Be prepared. Install a battery-operated carbon monoxide alarm in your home, camper or at your campsite, according to manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Educate yourself. Always read the operator’s manual first and follow the manufacturer’s recommended precautions and procedures.
  • Be aware. If you feel sick, dizzy or weak while using your portable generator, get to fresh air immediately and call 911 for emergency medical attention.

Watch a video on portable generator safety and access more information and downloads at http://www.TakeYourGeneratorOutside.com.

Susan Orenga, Executive Director
Portable Generator Manufacturers' Association

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