Gas Safety Week focuses on vulnerable groups

18 Sep 2019

It's Gas Safety Week 2019 and this year, the Gas Safe Register is focusing on keeping vulnerable groups safe as part of its campaign.

According to the latest UK inspection figures, one in five homes has unsafe gas appliances. The Gas Safe Register is calling on people to get clued up about gas safety in order to protect themselves and their loved ones. Installers have an important role to play too, through educating customers about gas safety and encouraging them to get their appliances checked annually.

Vulnerable groups are particularly 'at risk', such as the elderly or disabled reliant on carers. Research from the Gas Safe Register suggests there's confusion amongst carers about the signs of unsafe gas appliances.

Over 2,000 people who care for, or check in on an elderly or disabled loved one were surveyed. While 75% stated safety as a key reason for regularly visiting a vulnerable person, 92% didn't know any of the crucial signs that suggest a gas appliance might be unsafe.

There was also confusion around the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, such as breathlessness, nausea and headaches. Around a fifth of people surveyed weren't sure if the person they cared for had an audible CO alarm - 17% knew their loved on didn't have one.

Gas installers must educate customers on the signs of an unsafe appliance:

  • Floppy yellow or orange flames on gas appliances, such as cookers, instead of a bright blue one
  • Increased condensation inside windows
  • The pilot light repeatedly going out or the boiler fails to light
  • Black or sooty marks on or around your gas appliances
  • Feeling unwell – the six main symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are: headaches, dizziness, nausea, breathlessness, collapse and loss of consciousness

Jonathan Samuel, Chief Executive, Gas Safe Register said: “Those who look after others care deeply about their safety and well being and feel a lot of responsibility. We don’t want to add to the list of things to worry about, but we want to raise awareness of the signs of unsafe appliances. Unsafe appliances can be deadly and knowing the warning signs can protect you and your loved ones from harm.”

To help raise awareness, the Register has partnered with best-selling children’s author, Sophy Henn, to create a short story based on the original ‘Bad Nana’ series,’ Bad Nana: Better Gas Safe Than Sorry’. The book’s aim is to bring the issue to the attention of families and the people they care for, all delivered with Sophy’s signature dose of fun.

For more information about Gas Safety Week 2019, click here.

To view LCL Awards' range of Gas ACS qualifications, click here.