Tricounty News

Federal act named for Kimball boys

A bill called The Nicholas and Zachary Burt Memorial Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Prevention Act has passed the federal Senate Commerce Committee. If put into law, it would allow the Consumer Product Safety Commission to provide support for public safety education and the installation of carbon monoxide detectors, according to

Nick and Zach were 4 and 16 months old, respectively, when they died after their home on School Section Lake near Kimball filled with carbon monoxide. Older brother Ryan, 5 and a half at the time, survived, as did their parents. They had all been ill for more than a week, and the youngest family members died from carbon monoxide poisoning.

The legislation is sponsored by Sen. Amy Klobuchar who says it will go a long way to prevent future deaths from carbon monoxide poisoning. 

The boys’ mother Cheryl testified on the issue before Congress in December 2009.

Carbon monoxide poisoning is a silent killer, causing thousands of deaths each year. You can’t see, taste, or smell it. You feel dizzy or nauseated, or may have a headache, but you don’t realize you’re being poisoned. Carbon monoxide detectors should be as common and standard safety equipment for homes as smoke detectors are already.

The bill is now ready for full senate consideration.