Police Departments Installing Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Police across the state are working to install carbon monoxide detectors in cop SUVs after an officer crashed in Auburn, Massachusetts on Wednesday.

This is the third reported crash, after incidents in Louisiana and California, where the officer passed out behind the wheel and rammed into another car.

Officials believe the accidents could be connected to carbon monoxide fumes, which has tested positive in several other police cruisers.

Now, police departments in Connecticut are taking action over the potential carbon monoxide dangers.

A spokesman for the Bloomfield Police Department, Captain Stephen Hajdasz, said they have installed detectors in 14 marked cruisers and three other vehicles on Thursday.

"Our number one goal is to keep employees safe. They cannot protect the public and keep the public safe, if they're not our number one priority." Hajdasz said.

If dangerous fumes are present in the vehicles, the strip on the detector will change color.

"It’s a dot that's currently yellowish-gold and if it is indicating the presence of carbon monoxide it's going to start turning gray and depending on the severity of it, it could get totally black if up to 100 parts per million,” Hajdasz said.

Windsor Police Captain Tom Lepore told the NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters said while his department hasn’t had any issues, he doesn’t want to take any chances.

“We don't have an issue here in Windsor that we are aware of, but out of an abundance of caution, (Thursday) morning the chief and I decided that we were going to purchase carbon monoxide detectors,” Lepore said.

Seventeen detectors are on the way to Windsor. In Wethersfield, newly purchased carbon monoxide monitors will be arriving for Ford police interceptor SUVs by next week.

"They're our family they mean everything to us. We would certainly not want anything to happen to our officers so anything we can do to alert us to any problems and potentially avert a tragedy or accident we'll do,” Lepore said.

Meanwhile, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is investigating reports of carbon monoxide leaks in some Ford SUVS, but not any in Connecticut.

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