Gas Safety

Dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning

What is carbon monoxide poisoning?

Carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning can be fatal or cause permanent damage to your health. It has no smell and cannot be tasted. In large quantities, it can kill very quickly.

Where does carbon monoxide come from?

Carbon monoxide spillage can occur in any fuel-burning appliance that is not properly maintained including boilers, cookers, heaters, gas tumble dyers, hot-water heaters and fireplaces.

Who is at risk of poisoning?

Anyone can be poisoned by carbon monoxide. Some individuals are more at risk than others including young children, older people, people with anaemia and those with heart and lung diseases. Pregnant women are at risk of damage to their unborn children from carbon monoxide.

What are the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning?

Symptoms include headaches, dizziness, tiredness and nausea (feeling sick). Some of these symptoms can be mistaken for flu and common viruses, or even food poisoning.

What to do if you have symptoms?

Open the windows and get out into the fresh air immediately. If the symptoms are serious, you should go straight to your doctor or to a casualty department.

For more information contact CO Awareness on 0771 589 9296, email COawareness@COvictim.org or go to their website www.COvictim.org

Use this list to check for carbon monoxide leaks:

  1. Check the colour of the flames in your appliances, if orange there may be a problem. Whatever the colour, you should get your gas appliances serviced every year.
  2. Get your appliances checked by a qualified engineer registered with one of the following organisations:
    • BESCA (solid fuel and oil) > call 0800 652 5533
    • Gas Safe Register (gas) > call 0800 408 5500
    • HETAS Ltd (solid fuel) > call 01462 634721
    • NAPIT (solid fuel and oil) > call 0870 444 1392
    • OFTEC (oil) > call 0845 658 5080
  3. Make sure your chimney/flue isn’t blocked. If you have birds nesting in it, remove the nest and fit a guard to stop them nesting in future. It is very important to get your chimney/flue checked.
  4. Do you have an eye level grill? These can be particularly dangerous so check yours is working properly.
  5. Is there enough ventilation in your home? Check that any airbricks aren’t blocked. If your windows are double-glazed your appliances may not have enough air and they could produce carbon monoxide.

Within your tenancy agreement it states that you must allow Newydd Gas Engineers into your home to complete boiler testing. If you don’t let us into your home we will take action within your tenancy agreement and you could suffer from carbon monoxide poisoning. Call us on 0303 040 1998 to check when your boiler testing is due.