Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service (WFRS) is reminding people of the importance of having working carbon monoxide alarms in their home.
This week is Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week and WFRS are highlighting the need for households to make sure their fuel burning appliances – such as boilers and gas fires – are properly installed and maintained. This includes getting them tested by a Gas Safe registered engineer.
Since 1 October 2022, the rules for carbon monoxide alarms in homes have changed, and landlords now have a legal obligation to fit CO detectors in any room used as living accommodation containing a fixed combustion appliance, excluding gas cookers.
According to figures from Project Shout, every year an estimated 50 people in the UK die from carbon monoxide poisoning while 200 people become seriously ill from the effects of it.
Warwickshire County Councillor, Portfolio Holder for Community Safety and Fire, Andy Crump said: “Carbon monoxide is known as the silent killer because you can’t see it, taste it or smell it.
“Poisoning from carbon monoxide can occur when any fuel-burning appliance, such as a boiler, gas fire or central heating system has not been properly installed, maintained, or if there’s a lack of proper ventilation.
“If your gas appliances are overdue for a service, CO Awareness Week is the perfect time to get them checked by a professionally qualified Gas Safe engineer. Also, make sure you have a working carbon monoxide alarm in the same room as any heating appliance that doesn’t run off electricity.”
Warwickshire Fire and Rescue recommends you Stay ‘CO Aware’ by following these tips:
Know what carbon monoxide is and what causes it
- Carbon monoxide (CO) is a poisonous gas which has no taste, colour or smell and is known as the ‘silent killer’. It can make you feel seriously ill and can kill quickly without warning.
- It can be produced when poorly maintained, incorrectly fitted or badly repaired appliances do not burn gas completely.
- Go to CO Awareness Week | Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week 2022 (hetas.co.uk) for a wealth of useful information.
Know the physical symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning & what to do if you feel ill
- It can cause headaches, nausea, dizziness, breathlessness, collapse, loss of consciousness.
- If you’re suffering from any of the symptoms but feel better when you leave the house, it could be CO poisoning.
- If you think you or someone in your household may be suffering from CO poisoning, make sure you contact your GP, who can check and advise if you need treatment.
For more advice on carbon monoxide and tips on how to protect you and your family, visit: https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/carbonmonoxideawareness.