Should schools be required to have carbon monoxide detectors?

Should schools be required to have carbon monoxide detectors?

BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) -- It's an odorless, colorless killer.

And when carbon monoxide gas started leaking at a Georgia elementary school this week, 42 students and seven adults ended up in the hospital.

There were no serious injuries but the incident sparked serious discussion about requiring carbon monoxide detectors in public schools.

People we talked to said it makes sense.

"I've had (carbon monoxide poisoning) before," said Alan Tudor of Boise. "It's so subtle in the beginning, it's serious."

Leaks like the one in Georgia are not unheard of.  In the past three years, there have been leaks at schools in Pennsylvania, Utah and Minnesota.

The Environmental Protection Agency recommends that schools install carbon monoxide detectors at combustion sources, such as boilers, stoves, and water heaters.

But in most states, including Idaho, carbon monoxide detectors are not required by law in public schools.

That could change if lawmakers approve a measure headed their way this upcoming legislative session.

The proposal would update the 2009 international building code Idaho now follows which does not require carbon monoxide detectors in public schools.

"The 2012 code, however, does contain such a provision," said Bill Hatch, spokesman for the Idaho Division of Building Safety.

If the legislature approves the 2012 code, on Jan. 1, 2014, Idaho would join Connecticut and Maryland as states requiring carbon monoxide detectors in public schools.