Co2 cartridges can be as dangerous as the weapons themselves.
Co2 cartridges are used in a number of machines, such as bicycles, cars and paintball guns. Despite their rampant use, these cartridges can be extremely dangerous when stored or improperly used. A Co2 cartridge can maim or even kill, so extreme care should be taken when handling Co2 cartridges.
Explosions in High Temperatures
In Sumatera Paintball’s conditions of use, the paintball company warns that a Co2 cartridge exposed to high temperatures can explode from increased pressure inside the canister. TriUK, a store that specializes in triathlon equipment, defines high temperatures for a Co2 cartridge as anything about 122 degrees Fahrenheit. The incredible force of a Co2 explosion can cause serious and possible permanent damage to the human body.
Oxygen Displacement in Enclosed Spaces
A publication created by the Pewee Valley Fire Protection District in Pewee Valley, Kentucky, touches on the fact that you should never stay in an enclosed space with a Co2 cartridge because Co2 displaces all of the oxygen. According to Chapter 50 in the book “Toxicology Secrets,” carbon dioxide is a simple asphyxiant that is harmless when encountered in small doses in an open space. However, if the cartridge releases the gas in an enclosed space, you breathe in carbon dioxide instead of oxygen, causing you to quickly lose consciousness. Depending on how long you breathe in the Co2, critical organs could shut down from oxygen deprivation and you may never regain consciousness.
Brain Damage from Inhaling Co2
Intentionally huffing Co2 can lead to permanent brain damage. Inhaling Co2 instead of oxygen kills brain cells. According to the MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia, brains deprived of oxygen is a condition known as cerebral hypoxia. Possible complications associated with ceberal hypoxia include seizures, coma and even death.