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Carbon monoxide

Carbon Monoxide - You can’t see it, taste or smell it – but it can kill you quickly, with no warning.
British Sign Language video for this safety page

Carbon monoxide (CO) is a highly poisonous gas.

It’s created when fossil fuels such as natural gas and solid fuels like charcoal and wood fail to combust fully, because of a lack of oxygen.

It can come out of gas appliances and chimney flues, and even barbecues – which is why you should never take a smouldering or lit BBQ indoors, or into anywhere like a tent or caravan. Even if you’ve finished cooking, your BBQ will give off fumes for hours after use.

You can buy detectors and alarms which measure the CO at home and warn you if it’s too high. You can also get portable, battery-powered ones to use if you go camping, caravanning and travelling.

Always buy from a reputable store or your energy provider. The detector should be marked EN50291 and have the British Standards Kitemark or another European approval organisation’s mark on it.

Have a look at Gas Safe Register and Gas Safe Charity websites for more.

Gas Safe Register Logo
If you have work done in your home involving gas appliances such as boilers or cookers, they should always be carried out by a gas engineer who is on the Gas Safe Register, it’s the law.

You can find registered gas engineers, or check their credentials on the Gas Safe Register website.

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