1 Million West Midland Residents Value their TV More Than Their Health Says Laker Home Care

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Half of West Midland’s homes don’t have a carbon monoxide monitor according to http://www.lakerhomecare.com

Every year thousands of people across the UK are diagnosed with carbon monoxide poisoning. You can’t see it, taste it or smell it, but it can kill quickly with no warning.

Gas Safety Week - Shocking statistics released today from http://www.lakerhomecare.com, Sutton Coldfield and Tamworth’s trusted heating experts, show that over 2 million people in the West Midlands are living without a carbon monoxide monitor, despite thousands of people being rushed to hospital with suspected Carbon Monoxide poisoning last year, resulting in nearly 50 deaths.** The research was conducted for Gas Safety Week (15th – 19th September), which aims to raise awareness of gas safety in our homes.

One in eight West Midland residents actually felt that they would be more worried about their television packing up than them having a boiler that gives off carbon monoxide. This alarming statistic highlighted the lack of knowledge around the dangers. What’s more, over half of homeowners didn’t ask for an engineer’s qualification when they were working on gas appliances, and a third of people didn’t associate the maintenance of their boiler with the avoidance of carbon monoxide poisoning.

James Lakey, MD of Laker Home Care said: “It is essential that gas appliances are installed by Gas Safe Registered engineers. West Midland homeowners shouldn’t feel embarrassed about asking for qualifications as it could end up saving you and your families’ lives. A reputable engineer will always be happy to show their qualifications. There are also low-cost measures that you can take to ensure your safety, including having an annual boiler safety check and installing a carbon monoxide monitor in your home. http://www.lakerhomecare.com urges people to take these simple actions and ensure they don’t become a statistic.”

The research from http://www.lakerhomecare.com, showed that one in seven people in the West-Midlands felt that carbon monoxide monitors were too expensive, despite them retailing at approximately £15. Worryingly, eighteen per cent of the population cited their reason for not having one as ‘they already have a smoke alarm’, which would not detect carbon monoxide poisoning (unless the dual purpose alarm is purchased). Even more concerning was the lack of knowledge around the dangers, with twenty per cent of people believing that carbon monoxide cannot make them ill.

Chris Bielby, spokesperson from Scotia Gas Networks and Chairman of the Gas Safety Trust said: “Every year thousands of people across the UK are diagnosed with carbon monoxide poisoning. You can’t see it, taste it or smell it, but it can kill quickly with no warning.

“It is incredibly important that we take this issue seriously and start implementing measures like having annual boiler servicing, installing carbon monoxide alarms and checking engineer qualifications. We estimate that there are around 7,500 illegal gas fitters operating across the UK and up to 250,000 illegal gas jobs may be carried out each year.”     

Carbon monoxide is often known as the silent killer and symptoms can include headaches, nausea and losing consciousness. One in five (17%) West Midland’s residents didn’t know what the symptoms were and thought they would develop a rash and start sneezing if there was carbon monoxide poisoning in their home.

Landlord’s seemed to get off lightly with only half of tenants in the UK asking to see a gas safety certificate, a document that a Landlord is legally obliged to share with their tenant to demonstrate the safety of all gas appliances.

For more information and to find a gas safe registered engineer visit http://www.lakerhomecare.com.

Additional Advice

  • Employ a qualified engineer, who is registered with the Gas Safe Register (formerly CORGI), for work on gas appliances
  • Fit a carbon monoxide alarm that meets British or European Standards
  • Have fuel-burning appliances checked regularly by a qualified engineer
  • Ensure chimneys and flues are clean and not blocked
  • Ensure all rooms are well ventilated when an appliance is being usedFit an extractor fan in your kitchen

The research was conducted by Populus in August/September 2014 for http://www.lakerhomecare.com.
*The population of the West Midlands is 5.6 million. 14% of people said that they are more worried about their TV packing up than having a boiler that gives out carbon monoxide.
**According to Headway.org

About Laker Home Care
Laker has specialised in facilities management for Tamworth and Sutton Coldfield businesses for 35 years. Laker Home Care launched to support homeowners in the same way, installing, repairing and maintaining central heating and gas boiler systems in Tamworth and Sutton Coldfield. Laker Home Care is one of the largest independent maintenance providers in the West Midlands, with its entire staff being directly employed, ensuring the highest levels of customer service.
Visit http://www.lakerhomecare.com.

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Emma Harvey
HomeServe Alliance
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