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MP backs campaign to guard against 'Carbon Monoxide tragedy' this Winter

November 8, 2012 10:40 AM

TF 9South Lakes MP Tim Farron is urging people across Cumbria to be 'carbon monoxide safe' this winter, as families start switching on their boilers with cold weather approaching.

Tim's call is part of a new national campaign organised by the All-Party Parliamentary Carbon Monoxide Group, urging people across the UK to be aware of the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning this winter. Members of the public are being strongly encouraged to take appropriate steps to ensure their homes are properly protected against the threat posed by CO leaks.

Last year in the UK over two dozen people died from CO poisoning, with many hundreds more being admitted to hospital with symptoms attributed to carbon monoxide. The colourless, odourless gas - often dubbed the 'Silent Killer' - can kill quickly if inhaled in high concentrations. The symptoms of poisoning are similar to flu or food poisoning, and include headaches, nausea and dizziness.

Tim is calling upon all householders in Westmorland and Lonsdale and the wider area to have their boiler serviced by a certified technician every 12 months and install an audible carbon monoxide alarm in their homes to ensure all families are protected from leaks of the potentially lethal gas.

Local residents are further encouraged to look for warning signs that domestic gas appliances aren't working correctly, and thus could be at risk of CO leakage. Warning signs include lazy yellow or orange flames on appliances such as boilers and gas stoves instead of crisp blue flames, black marks on or around the appliance and too much condensation in the room.

Residents should also make sure only a 'Gas Safe registered' engineer works on their gas appliances. Illegal gas fitters can put your life at risk. Always check the engineer's Gas Safe Register ID card.

Commenting, Tim said: "It is absolutely vital that people across Cumbria understand the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning and, most importantly, how we can all protect our homes and families from the threat.

"The campaign's message is simple - get your boiler serviced and get an audible carbon monoxide alarm. These cheap, simple steps could be the difference between your family's safety, and tragedy. We must do all we can to stop these heart-breaking and unnecessary deaths.

"I cannot urge people enough: get a carbon monoxide alarm and get your boiler checked."