When it comes to gas safety there’s no off-season, although it is important to know that there is such a thing as seasonal gas safety. When temperatures rise and fall, or the rain falls in deluge, it can have unique impacts on your gas appliances. To help you get a better understanding on seasonal gas safety, here is everything you need to know about key challenges throughout the year.
Gas safety on holiday
When on holiday, the last thing on your mind is gas safety, however, it’s crucial that you keep yourself safe. Whether it’s a long summer holiday or a winter weekend getaway are you packing a carbon monoxide monitor in your suitcase? If not, you should be. Gas safety on holiday is just as important as it is at home, this is because when you’re on holiday you have less knowledge or control over the state of any gas appliances.
Although, there isn’t much difference between gas safety in a caravan or gas safety on boats, gas safety when camping in a tent is different. Gas camping stoves, gas heaters (such as table and patio heaters), and even solid fuel BBQs can produce carbon monoxide (CO) thereby leading to possible poisoning. Therefore, if they are brought into a tent, a caravan or any other enclosed space, during or after use, they can emit harmful CO putting anyone around them in danger.
It’s also important to remember that gas safety regulations in other countries may differ from those outside the UK. While you can’t be expected to know what’s legal and what’s not everywhere you go, you can keep you and others around you safe by following some simple tips.
Tips for gas safety on holiday
- Ask if the gas appliances in your accommodation have been serviced and safety checked.
- Take an audible carbon monoxide alarm with you.
- When you arrive, the appliances may not work in the same way as those you have at home. If no instructions are provided, then contact your holiday rep or accommodation owner for assistance if you’re unsure.
- Be aware of the signs of unsafe gas appliances
- Black marks and stains around the appliance
- Lazy orange or yellow flames instead of crisp blue ones
- High levels of condensation in your accommodation
- Never use gas cookers, stoves or BBQs for heating, and ensure they have adequate ventilation when in use.
Summer is a time for being outdoors and enjoying long evenings. Come rain or shine we light up our BBQs with usually the only worries being whether it will rain, or the sausages are fully cooked through. Gas safety isn’t just something for the home, or industrial environments, BBQs need special attention to ensure they’re safe.
Carbon monoxide is a gas that its health risks are widely known with many of us installing detectors in our homes and businesses. However, the association of carbon monoxide is associated with our BBQs is unknown. If the weather is poor, we may decide to barbeque in the garage doorway or under a tent or canopy. Some of us may even bring our BBQs into the tent after use. These can all be potentially fatal as the carbon monoxide collects in these confined areas. It must be noted that the cooking area should be well away from buildings and be well ventilated with fresh air, otherwise you are at risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Knowing the signs of carbon monoxide poisoning is vital – Headaches, Nausea, Breathlessness, Dizziness, Collapse or Loss of consciousness.
Equally with a propane or butane gas canister, we store in our garages, sheds and even our homes unaware that there is a risk of a potentially deadly combination of an enclosed space, a gas leak and a spark from an electrical device. All of which could cause an explosion.
Gas safety in winter
When the cold weather sets in, gas boilers and gas are fired up for the first time in several months, to keep us warm. However, this increased usage can put extra pressure on appliances and can result in them breaking down. Therefore, preparing for winter by ensuring gas appliances – including boilers, warm air heaters, cookers and fires – have been regularly safety checked and maintained by a qualified Gas Safe registered engineer, who carry gas detectors.
What to do if you suspect a gas leak
If you can smell gas or think there could be a gas leak in a property, boat or caravan, it’s important to act fast. A gas leak poses a risk of fire or even explosion.
- Extinguish any naked flames to stop the chance of fire or explosion.
- Turn off the gas at the meter if possible (and safe to do so).
- Open windows to allow ventilation and ensure the gas dissipates.
- Evacuate the area immediately to prevent risk to life.
- Inform your holiday representative or accommodation owner immediately or equivalent.
- Seek medical attention if you feel unwell or show signs of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Carbon monoxide poisoning symptoms
The signs and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are often mistaken for other illnesses, such as food poisoning or flu. Symptoms include:
- Nausea or feeling sick
- Loss of consciousness
Anyone who suspects they are suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning should immediately go outside into the fresh air and seek urgent medical attention.
Personal gas detectors
The Clip SDG personal gas detector is designed to withstand the harshest industrial working conditions and delivers industry leading alarm time, changeable alarm levels and event logging as well as user-friendly bump test and calibration solutions.
Gasman with specialist CO sensor is a rugged, compact single gas detector, designed for use in the toughest environments. Its compact and lightweight design makes it the ideal choice for industrial gas detection.