Friday, December 01, 2000
'SWAT' teams enter for safety
Sweep checks furnaces in 15 area homes
By Susan Vela
The Cincinnati Enquirer
A SWAT team entered 15 Northern Kentucky homes on Thursday, carrying not guns but gas meters, gas analyzers and briefcases filled with furnace-cleaning hand tools.
The Severe Weather Action Team, a volunteer effort organized by Covington-based Knochelmann Service Experts, traversed Boone, Grant, Campbell and Kenton counties to guarantee that heat-generating furnaces are safe for the colder months and not likely to leak life-threatening carbon monoxide.
Marna Mandarino, 37, of Newport, was pleased to hear the knock on the door Thursday morning. SWAT member Chris Kelly entered and went immediately to Mrs. Mandarino's basement. He opened the furnace door, and they both discovered that there was a dangerous roll out of flames.
Wow, you could have roasted marshmallows, Mrs. Mandarino said. I didn't expect such a big flame.
Chris Kelly, technician with Knochelmann Service Experts, uses a carbon-monoxide detector to check the furnace in Marna Mandarino's Newport home.|
(Patrick Reddy photo)
| ZOOM |
She felt safer knowing that a professional was taking care of the problem.
Mr. Kelly said it was a definite safety hazard. He did his best to make it as new as a 31-year-old furnace can get, he said.
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission in Washington, D.C., 200 people die and 10,000 are treated in hospital emergency rooms because of carbon-monoxide poisoning that originated from fuel-burning appliances.
Thursday's SWAT effort worked in conjunction with Northern Kentucky Community Action of Covington, which provides clothing, and rent and heating assistance to lower-income families. Knochelmann organized the SWAT effort, following the lead of its national headquarters in Dallas, Texas.
It's a national commitment. ... We like to keep our name out there in helping people, said Sue Kaiser of Knochelmann. The company provides plumb ing, heating and air-conditioning services.
Darla Griffin, director of Northern Kentucky Community Action's weatherization services, appreciated the SWAT work. She noted that the agency has a program that last year helped 85 homes in an eight-county region conserve heat.
Caulking windows, installing insulation and replacing broken windows and heating systems are some of the services provided.
The program is pretty vital, she said. Demand increases at this time of year. People generally don't think about heating in the summer.
Flu fight seeks a shot in the arm
Low marks for higher ed
Sick of the ballot battle? So are half your neighbors
RADEL: Fifth and Race
Study: Commute is costly here
Cancer check easy to get here
No federal money yet for riverfront park study
'Ramping' hazard remains
Bush sympathizers put money where their miff is
Township buys land in Lebanon
Firm likely to bring 20 jobs to city
Lebanon chamber head has big plans
New horns at rail crossings might reduce noise problems
Priest stabbing case still on hold
Tristaters give student standards qualified OK
Beetles devastating E. Ky. pines
Bus crash claims 5-year-old
Butler leaders scrutinize court budget
Figures give clues on how guns come to be used in area crimes
Judge tosses most counts mayor faced
Lawsuit says boy, 16, was molested by teacher
Lucas avoids taking stand on election
Ohio State might hire off-duty police for off-campus parties
Search for top cop down to 5
Seeing, touching a slice of 1883
Seminar for adults considering college
Several alternatives remain for final route of Ohio 63 extension
Spill blamed on 'an act of God'
St. X High chooses president
State footed Henry's bill at hotel for pageant stays
'SWAT' teams enter for safety
Kentucky News Briefs
Tristate A.M. Report