The main risks to avoid when using your generator are carbon monoxide poisoning, electrocution, and fire.
Here are some safety tips provided by the American Red Cross to follow when using a generator for power outages during severe weather.
Never use a generator, grill, camp stove, or other gasoline, propane, natural gas, or charcoal burning devices inside the home, garage, basement, crawl space, or any partially enclosed area.
A way to avoid electrocution, keep the generator dry and do not use it in wet conditions. Operate it on dry surface under an open canopy like structure, such as under a tarp held up by poles. Do not touch the generator with wet hands.
Be sure to open doors and windows or using fans will not prevent carbon monoxide buildup in the home. Although carbon monoxide can’t be seen or smelled, it can rapidly lead to full incapacitation and death. Even if you cannot smell exhaust fumes, you may still be exposed to carbon monoxide. If you start feeling dizzy, sick or weak while using a generator, get to fresh air immediately.
Last thing, install carbon monoxide alarms in central locations on every level of your home or property and outside sleeping areas to provide early warnings.