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Savannah's Law to Become Law: The Need for Carbon Monoxide Tests

A state representative says he and his wife both got headaches while driving not long ago. He found out his car had a problem.

STATE HOUSE--Savannah's Law will soon be law and that mean's you'll be able to ask for a carbon monoxide test for the inside of your car from your fire department.

Not all fire departments in Indiana have the testing devices yet, but when they get one, the test will be free and it could save your life, said Rep. Woody Burton (R-Whiteland), a former mechanic.

RELATED ARTICLE with testimony from the Bettis family

The bill has passed the House and the Senate and will become law after Gov. Holcomb signs it.

"Savannah’s Law,” was written after the 2015 death of a Ben Davis High School student. Savannah Bettis was killed in a car crash resulting from the vehicle’s degraded exhaust system circulating carbon monoxide into the cabin. An odorless gas, carbon monoxide was able to reach dangerous concentration levels within the vehicle, incapacitating she and her boyfriend, who was driving. He survived the crash. 

“Carbon monoxide is dangerous because most people are not aware they are even exposed to the deadly gas,” said Burton. 

“I used to be a mechanic, so I can typically spot when a car is not working properly. A few months ago, my wife and I were experiencing headaches while driving. After checking the car out, we found the catalytic converter had come loose and was leaking carbon monoxide into the cabin, and we were able to fix it. ‘Savannah’s Law’ will give Hoosiers more opportunities to ensure their vehicles are operating properly and help prevent future tragedies.” 

Burton said he and his wife got headaches while driving just weeks ago and a carbon monoxide test showed dangerous levels in the car.

"They (cars) are so tight that you don't realize it when you have the windows rolled up that the ventilation system brings it right back in the car and it can kill you," said Burton. 

PHOTO: Indiana Senate

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