Landlords appear to be well ahead of the game when it comes to carbon monoxide detectors.
For around six years it’s been compulsory for landlords in England to have a carbon monoxide alarm in any room that contains a solid fuel burning appliance, such as a coal fire or wood burning stove. And the government has encouraged landlords to fit them in all rooms with gas appliances too.
The rest of the community is behind, according to new figures from boiler company BOXT.
Ahead of Gas Safety Week next week, the firm surveyed 2,000 UK residents to reveal how gas safe the public are.
In the study some 12.3 per cent of respondents admitted to never testing their smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and another 7.8 per cent didn't even know where their alarms were.
Another 12.7 per cent of respondents said they would have no idea what to do in the instance of a carbon monoxide leak, and only 25 per cent would recognise the main six symptoms of exposure to the fumes.
Andy Kerr, co-founder of BOXT, says: "Carbon monoxide leaks are easy to miss if you don't have a working detector, as you can't see, smell, or taste the poisonous fumes.
"Every second counts after being exposed to carbon monoxide. So, you must be able to recognise the signs of carbon monoxide poisoning and know how to respond in the event of a leak."
Carbon monoxide poisoning can cause headaches, dizziness, nausea, breathlessness, tiredness, and stomach pain. It can also lead to a loss of consciousness and even death.
Kerr continues: “The symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning can also be linked to various other illnesses but unlike the flu, it won’t cause a high temperature. Some even confuse it for food poisoning, tiredness, or a hangover, so it’s critical to fit an alarm that will detect a leak. Symptoms can get worse with more exposure to the source of the leak, and lift when the sufferer leaves the area or property.”
If you suspect a carbon monoxide leak has occurred in your home, turn the gas off or leave the room with the solid fuel-burning appliance, open the windows, leave the property, and go outside.
Don't smoke, light a match, or turn any electrical switches on or off. Also, don't use doorbells, mobile phones, or any other electrical switches that could trigger a spark. Carbon monoxide is not only deadly to breathe in but also highly flammable.
Kerr concludes: "While gas and carbon monoxide poisonings are extremely serious, you can minimise the risk by conducting regular maintenance of gas appliances, smoke alarms, and carbon monoxide detectors. These safety checks take little time and effort but can save your life."
Want to comment on this story? If so...if any post is considered to victimise, harass, degrade or intimidate an individual or group of individuals on any basis, then the post may be deleted and the individual immediately banned from posting in future.