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January 28, 2011 - Jodelle Greiner
In journalism, we learn new things every day. Every time we cover a school board, city council or commissioners meeting, we learn. Every time we interview someone about a personal experience, we learn.
And we try to pass what we learn on to you, our readers.
When we interview someone about their illness, we’re not being rude, sticking our noses into their private pain — we’re trying to find out how they found out they were sick, what symptoms they had that sent them to the doctor and what treatments are currently being considered the best, so that you can stay informed and know what to look for. Some of these illnesses have very vague symptoms or symptoms that could pass for a benign illness, and if you ignore them too long, it’s too late.
I interviewed Maria and Jeremy Frank recently about their house having carbon monoxide in it. Fortunately, they had a digital CO2 detector that gave them an early warning and they were able to fix the problem — a dirty water heater — before it really affected their health.
Since CO2 is odorless, colorless and tasteless, everyone should have a CO2 detector in their home, and get a new one every few years because they wear out, according to Blue Earth Assistant Fire Chief Jim Wirkus, who added that the Blue Earth Fire Department is seeing more calls for CO2 because of worn out detectors.
CO2 displaces the oxygen in your body and makes you very sleepy. Maria Frank was taking frequent naps because, as a stay-at-home mom, she was in the house much more than Jeremy was. You can go to sleep and never wake up. An ice fisherman in southern Minnesota died this week after being poisoned by CO2 in his fish house.
We interview people about a lot of different things, from illnesses to accidents to random acts of kindness. We find out interesting things that are going on in the community and let you know when local organizations need extra help. We keep you informed on what’s happening with your friends and neighbors so you know when they need help and you can pitch in.
It’s our job to keep you informed and, hopefully, you learn right along with us. It might even save your life.
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