Friday, 17 April 2015

The dangers of carbon monoxide in the family home & giveaway #7

Until it happens to us we don't tend to take things seriously, that was the case for me when my husband left the gas on for 30 minutes. I was in my 3rd trimester and as it was a nice summer evening we decided to go for a quick stroll after dinner. When we came home neither of us noticed the smell until I couldn't get comfortable because of a weird smell in the house. I sniffed myself and my blanket, but the smell wasn't coming from any of the things. And few minutes before my husband wanted to put something on a hob I decided to check the kitchen to see if it's gas I can smell and that was it!

Instinctively I switched the hob off, opened all windows to ventilate the house and had to go out until it was safe to come in. Who knows what could have happened if I didn't act quickly..

Another example of carbon monoxide dangers- my father-in-law has smell and taste disorder and on one occasion I have noticed that their cooker was left on, which is a potential danger and gas engineer also pointed out that he can smell carbon monoxide from their chimney and advised not to use it. 

Carbon monoxide is a colourless, odourless and tasteless gas and, as such, it is very difficult to detect and can easily be inhaled without you realising. Being exposed to high concentration levels can be fatal or cause several other long-term health problems such as brain damage. According to NHS statistics, every year in the UK, over 200 people go to hospital with suspected carbon monoxide poisoning, and around 40 people die.

There are several warning signs in your home that could mean you have a carbon monoxide issue. Here are a few things to look out for:

  • The flame on your cooker should be crisp and blue. Yellow or orange flames mean you need to get your cooker checked
  • Dark staining around or on appliances
  • Sooty marks on the walls around boilers, stoves or the cover of gas fires
  • Pilot lights that frequently go out
  • Increased condensation inside windows
When to call the experts

Have a functioning carbon monoxide alarm in your home as an early warning detector. If you smell gas you need to act quickly. Immediately stop using all your cooking and heating appliances, gas and electric. Make sure the room is well ventilated by opening all doors and windows. If you have access to your gas isolation valve turn it a quarter turn so the lever is at 90 degrees to the upright gas pipe. You should then ring the National Gas Emergency Service on 0800 11 999.

Being aware of the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning could save your life. Here are the main six symptoms to look out for:

  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Breathlessness
  • Collapse
  • Loss of consciousness
If you suspect you or anyone in your house has inhaled carbon monoxide. It is important that you get fresh air immediately; turn off the appliance and leave the house. If you think you are in danger ring the National Gas Emergency Helpline on 0800 11 999. You should seek medical attention as soon as possible – visit your GP or go to the hospital as soon as possible – let them know that you suspect carbon monoxide poisoning.

What CORGI HomePlan can do: 
If you know you have a leak, don’t attempt to fix this yourself – Get a Gas Safe registered engineer to inspect your gas appliances or flues to see if there is a dangerous problem. All the engineers used at CORGI HomePlan are there to ensure you get the highest possible quality service and your home is kept completely safe. They will perform a thorough service on your boiler and gas supply, including several tests and checks to ensure that the appliance is operating safely.

I am very delighted to offer one of my readers the opportunity to win the carbon monoxide detector worth £30, all you have to do is fill out the Rafflecopter form below  (the competition starts on 17 April 12am and ends on 1 May 12am): 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


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