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News Tip: Generators to Beach Erosion, Experts Available to Discuss Storm Safety

Experts from a variety of relevant areas are available to comment for stories

With Hurricane Florence bearing down on the East Coast, Duke University experts from a variety of relevant areas are available to comment for stories, including a doctor who can discuss -- in English or Spanish -- the dangers of improper use of generators. A video interview with Dr. John J. Freiberger talking about these dangers can be downloaded in English and Spanish at

  • Quotes:
    "Carbon monoxide is both deadly and treacherous; it’s not detectable by smell or sight,” says Duke University Dr. John J. Freiberger, an associate professor of anesthesiology. “Using generators is a real problem in terms of carbon monoxide toxicity.

    “Unfortunately you really don’t know how rapidly you are going to be incapacitated. So you can’t use the smell of the generator or other exhaust gases to tell when you’re about ready to lose consciousness.”

    “Carbon monoxide goes through walls. It penetrates sheet rock very, very easily. Having a generator in a garage or on the porch or in another room of your house is absolutely no protection. It can be deadly and it can kill many people at one time.”

    “Have the area completely well-ventilated. It should not be run when people are sleeping. If you fear it could be damaged by rain or lost to theft, it should be brought inside and turned off.”

  • Bio:
    Dr. John J. Freiberger is an associate professor of anesthesiology and a hyperbaric medicine specialist at Duke University School of Medicine.
  • For additional comment, contact Dr. Freiberger at: 
  • Media Contact:
    Sarah Avery
    (919) 684-4148

A list of other Duke experts who can speak about hurricanes and flooding risk, coastal damage and other topics can be found here:
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Note to broadcast editors: Duke provides an on-campus satellite uplink facility for live or pre-recorded television interviews, as well as a digital studio for interviews by Skype or Google Hangout. We are also equipped with ISDN connectivity for radio interviews. These services are usually available during normal business hours. Broadcast reporters should contact Steve Hartsoe to arrange an interview:; (919) 681-4515. Reporters may also call the Duke News afterhours line, (919) 812-6603.