Gas Safety Week 2017 – Why is it so Important?
Gas Safe Register have been keeping homes safe from gas related incidents across the UK since 2009 when they replaced CORGI as the gas registration body. To protect the public and businesses, Gas Safe pride themselves on providing inspection reports of unsafe gas appliances and raising awareness of gas safety at home and in the workplace. Every year, Gas Safe carry out a Gas Safety Week campaign to promote Gas Safety in the UK, but why is it so important that we listen to their profound message?
According to recent HSE studies, over 20 lives are claimed every year due to unsafe gas appliances in the home. Studies show, that non-gas safe registered engineers are responsible for nearly 250,000 illegal gas installations every year, so it is important that we always look out for the yellow trust triangle when choosing our gas technicians. With the most vulnerable age group being between ages 70-85, it is essential that we know the warning signs of gas related illnesses or Carbon Monoxide (CO) poisoning to keep our loved one’s safe.
What is CO Poisoning?
Carbon Monoxide (CO) Poisoning, is caused by inhaling too much Carbon Monoxide typically emitted from gas powered appliances; it is typically produced when fuels such as gas, oil, coal and wood do not burn fully, or are burned in an area with insufficient ventilation. After carbon monoxide is inhaled, the gas enters your bloodstream and mixes with your red blood cells which are used to carry oxygen around your body. When this happens, the blood is no longer able to carry oxygen and causes your body’s cells/tissues to die and fail. The NHS reports that more than 200 people every year are admitted to hospital with Carbon Monoxide poisoning, which leads to around 50 deaths.
What are the symptoms of Carbon Monoxide (CO) Poisoning?
- Nausea and Vomiting
- Tiredness and Confusion
- Stomach Pain
- Shortness of Breath or Difficulty Breathing
- Personality Changes
- Loss of Consciousness
If you suspect you may have been exposed to excessive levels of Carbon Monoxide (CO) and are experiencing the above symptoms, it is important to visit your local A&E department immediately.
How can we prevent Carbon Monoxide Poisoning?
- Regularly maintain and service your appliances
- Ensure the technicians servicing the appliances are Gas Safe Registered – Look out for the yellow trust triangle
- Never use cooking appliances to heat your homes
- Never used oversized pots on your gas stove
- Make sure the room is well ventilated
- Fit an extractor fan in your kitchen
Although Carbon Monoxide (CO) poisoning is possibly one of the deadliest outcomes of an unsafe Gas Appliance, there are other risks and factors to consider when keeping your family safe. Over the year, Gas Safe engineers report to hundreds of gas leaks, fires and explosions caused by unsafe appliances.
Most commonly reported Gas Appliance faults are Gas Leaks, these typically occur from faulty appliances and pipework. Although most gases are not poisonous like Carbon Monoxide, gas leaks can cause fires and explosions.
How can we detect a gas leak? Normally there are a few warning signs when there is a leak somewhere in your home, typically it will be a distinct smell any time you turn your hob on. Even though the gas used for home appliances is naturally odourless, a safety odour is added to the gas to make it easily detectable before it’s too late. As mentioned before, although the most commonly known sign that you may have a gas leak is the smell, rust or corrosion on pipework can also be a big indicator that something isn’t quite right.
As soon as any gas leaks are detected, it is essential to report this to your local Gas Registered Engineer to prevent any nasty incidents like explosions or fires.
So why is Gas Safety Week so Important?
After looking into all of the potential risks and dangers, its clear to see why we find Gas Safety Week to be so important. Over the years there have been many stories in the news involving accidental injuries and deaths involving gas, so it is important to raise awareness of these dangers to reduce the number of such incidents. Gas Safety Weeks mission is to give the nation a completely different outlook on the dangers of Gas, and to build a high level of knowledge and understanding that could potentially save lives.
We at Joblogic take Gas Safety very seriously, and we work with businesses to provide applications and workflows to help industries be compliant when it comes to working with Gas. Whether you are a one man band or a well established business, Joblogic can help you complete industry standard forms electronically and create full customer portfolios to track and monitor old and new surveys.
To find out more about our Software for Gas Engineers, forms and workflows, visit our website here or call 0800 326 5561 for more information.
Sources: www.rospa.com, www.sgsgas.co.uk, www.easysafetycert.co.uk, www.co-gassafety.co.uk, www.dsfire.gov.uk, www.gassaferegister.co.uk.