Gas Safety Trust poll finds ‘shockingly’ low understanding of the symptoms and characteristics of carbon monoxide poisoning
An online poll of 2,000 people carried out by OnePoll on behalf of the GST, found that despite a number of recent high profile campaigns, only 13% of the people questioned were able to identify the main symptoms and characteristics of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning.
The poll also discovered that the under 25s were the least able to identify all of the symptoms and characteristics and that under a third had an audible CO alarm.
It was also found that over one third of homeowners had not had their boiler serviced in the last 12 months, while just under a quarter of renters knew whether their appliances had undergone a landlord’s safety check.
Commenting on the polls’ findings, Chris Bielby, Chair of the GST, said: “We were disappointed to find that despite a concerted effort by industry and others, there is still a worrying lack of awareness about the dangers of carbon monoxide.”
With the Department of Health estimating 40 deaths per year from carbon monoxide, Mr Bielby said it was essential that people got their appliances checked on an annual basis by an appropriately qualified engineer (Gas Safe Register in the case of natural gas appliances) and that every household has an audible carbon monoxide alarm.
“Initiatives over the last 10‒20 years have made great progress but with an emerging trend of fatalities from barbecues and generators, where they are used in enclosed spaces with poor ventilation such as tents, it is clear that we have much further to go to get the message across to the public,” concluded Mr Bielby.
Caption Chris Bielby, Chair of the GST – “it is clear that we have much further to go to get the message across to the public”.