When I was asked to write a little about Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week, I didn’t think twice. Since having both my children, I have become more aware and concerned for the dangers within my own house. We have many gas-powered functions in our house (in particular a gas fire) and our house is rented.
Recently CORGI Homeplan did a survey of 2000 homes (read the full article here: http://corgi-homeplan-how-safe-is-your-home.org/coawarenessweek/ ) A few of the facts really shocked me:
49% of homes still do not have a Carbon Monoxide Alarm
Less than half of the UK service their boiler annually and 7% have never been serviced
Camping lights and stoves are also huge dangers, along with a BBQ in an enclosed area.
But why is this so bad?
“When you breathe in carbon monoxide, it gets into your bloodstream and prevents your red blood cells from carrying oxygen. Without oxygen, your body tissue and cells die.
Levels that do not kill can cause serious harm to health when breathed in over a long period of time. Long term effects of carbon monoxide poisoning include paralysis and brain damage.
GP Dr Helen Webberley comments: “I’m shocked at the number of patients who come into my surgery displaying symptoms, without realising the cause. Clearly, awareness of carbon monoxide poisoning and its prevalence is too low. Brits must be vigilant to tell-tale signs which include dizziness, headaches, breathlessness and loss of consciousness.” ” (Extracted from CORGI)
It is only since becoming a mother that I have really spent a lot of time thinking about safety within my own home. Home is meant to be your families safe haven, carbon monoxide poisoning is such a silent killer, it does not pick and choose its victims. I think it’s so important to remind people to check their boilers and have a detector. Smoke alarms and Carbon Monoxide Alarms should not be something you should be without, hopefully you never need one, but is it worth the risk to not?
We will be giving a Fire Angel Carbon Monoxide Alarm away on our FACEBOOK page Monday 23rd November.