More than half (57%) of all Gas Safe engineers have had to turn off one of their customer’s gas appliances in the last 12 months after finding the appliance created an “immediate risk” to people’s property or safety, the Gas Safe Register has revealed.
The research, which was published to mark Gas Safety Week – which runs from September 15th to 21st – found that a failure to have the appliance serviced regularly was responsible for 45% of incidents in which gas appliances were immediately turned off.
At least 68,000 households have escaped carbon monoxide poisoning, fires and explosions in the last year, the Gas Safe Register discovered. In fact, the organisations own inspections of more than 120,000 residences in the last four years indicated that as many as one-sixth of all properties could contain dangerous gas appliances, or the equivalent of 4.28 million homes across the UK. In the last year alone, UK Gas Distribution Networks uncovered evidence of 70,000 hazardous gas appliances as a result of emergency call-outs.
But homeowners don’t have to worry unnecessarily; gas appliance safety checks are very affordable, and can even be free for people who have a boiler breakdown cover policy with us. There are more than 120,000 Gas Safe engineers operating across the company for companies such as 247 Home Rescue, with these professionals tirelessly working to keep the UK’s households as safe as possible.
Gas Safe Register Chief Executive Russell Kramer explained that gas-related incidents have led to more than 1,000 injuries and at least 31 deaths in the last three years.
However, after speaking to engineers and learning about how many incidents they see, it is “surprising” this figure is not higher, he added.
Engineers can only help people keep their homes safe if they are allowed in to perform gas safety checks, Mr Kramer pointed out, saying it is therefore the public’s responsibility to ensure they stay safe by arranging annual safety checks and using registered engineers.
To stay gas safe, the Gas Safe Register offered the following advice:
- Get a Gas Safe registered engineer to perform safety checks on all gas appliances every year
- Sign up with StayGasSafe.co.uk to find out about gas dangers in the local area and to be reminded about gas safety checks
- Carefully check the front and back of engineer’s Gas Safe Register ID card to ensure they are qualified to work on your appliances
- Look out for warning signs that an appliance may be dangerous, such as yellow flames, black stains and marks around the appliance, and unusual condensation in the room
- Know the warning signs of CO poisoning, namely headaches, nausea, dizziness, breathing difficulties, collapse and unconsciousness
If you ever have any questions about an engineer’s abilities or credentials, then contact the Gas Safe Register on 0800 408 5500 or through their website.