Generators can be dangerous

So, South Africa is running short on power, and people are using Generators during load-shedding.

But did you know that generators can be dangerous if you’re not careful?

A few people have died already. Here’s a report of one death, and what you could do to prevent it.


If you live in South Africa (which about 50% of the readers of this site do), then you are probably affected by the load shedding that is currently going on in the country.

Thanks to Eskom and the Government, it would appear that there currently is not enough electricity to meet the demands of the country. And Eskom is “forced” to shut down certain areas at certain times of the day to help ease the pressure.

This is obviously an annoyance. Forget that, it’s MORE than an annoyance, but this site is a family friendly site… 👿

To help combat this, people have resorted to buying generators to help supply electricity to their homes while they are affected by the load shedding.

But, some people are unaware of the effects of carbon-monoxide, and the possibility of carbon monoxide poisoning, resulting in death.

An article on News24 talks about how a family suffered due to the fumes from their generator:

Kempton Park – A woman and her pet bird were killed by the fumes of her generator which she used during a power failure.

Aletta Dormehl, 49, of Kempton Park was found dead on Wednesday morning in her home in Casuarina Street. She died from carbon monoxide poisoning.

Her son, Gerhard, 19, was being treated in the intensive care unit at the Tembisa Hospital after being rescued from his home and regained consciousness on Wednesday afternoon.

I spoke about this with a few people and their seems to be 3 possible ways to prevent this from happening:

Have an exhaust system

Generators are effectively engines, and they have exhausts.

Ensure that the exhaust fumes are blown outside the house, away from any windows or doors.

Ensure that there is proper ventilation in the house just in case any fumes DO get into the house.

Set up your generator outside

This is the option one of my friends has done. They’re creating a brick housing for their generator outside their house and away from any open windows.

They are definitely going to try and ensure their generator is secure and not easily stolen. I’ll have to see how they do it…

Store your generator indoors and set it up outside

This is a little more tedious I guess, but currently this is the way the friend from the option above is doing things.

He only takes out the generator when it’s needed. This way, it’s outside when it’s in use, but locked away safely when it’s not.

Other generator setup options

So, do you have any ideas or tips that you could add to the above? Or even just improve on or even say that the above ideas wouldn’t work (and why)?

If so, please leave your ideas as a comment below…

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