Stay Gas Safe This Summer

Ards and North Down Borough Council is urging residents to stay gas safe this summer following a tragic incident at a caravan park in Newcastle, County Down, in January this year. dn_screenThe Council is keen to avoid episodes of carbon monoxide poisoning in the local area, as Mayor of Ards and North Down, Alderman Alan Graham, explained: “The Council is keen to get the message out to residents to stay gas safe this summer. With many people taking a break in caravans or holiday houses where gas appliances are used which may not be safety checked as often as those in their homes, there is a heightened risk of carbon monoxide incidents. “Often known as the silent killer, carbon monoxide cannot be smelt or seen and victims are often unconscious before they realise what is happening, so it is important to be aware of how to stay safe and what symptoms to look out for.” Top tips for staying gas safe include:

*  Make sure your appliances are correctly installed and serviced annually.

*  Ensure rooms containing gas appliances are properly ventilated – never block vents.

*  Make sure all chimneys are regularly swept and kept clear.

*  Use appliances only for the purpose for which they were designed, e.g. do not use a cooker to heat a room.

*  Never use any appliance if you suspect it might be faulty.

*  Fit a Carbon Monoxide Monitor.

Early symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning can mimic many common ailments and may easily be confused with food poisoning, viral infections, flu or simple tiredness. Symptoms to look out for include:

*  headaches * breathlessness * nausea * dizziness * collapse * loss of consciousness * tiredness * drowsiness *  vomiting * pains in the chest * stomach pains * erratic behaviour * visual problems If you think that you may have carbon monoxide poisoning:

* leave the premises, get fresh air

* and seek immediate medical advice. For more information on staying gas safe contact the Council on 0300 013 3333 or visit: