If you're still looking for Christmas gift ideas, this is something that could be the most precious gift you ever give. Please read all the advice and information to make sure you and your loved ones stay safe from this horrific silent killer in 2011.
The CO Angels launch carbon monoxide alarm giveaway
Three women, who have lost loved ones to carbon monoxide poisoning, are teaming up to raise awareness of the dangers of the ‘silent killer’ by giving away carbon monoxide alarms this festive season.
‘The CO Angels’ will be dishing out a number of audible carbon monoxide alarms in their home towns this Christmas as part of a campaign to raise awareness about this highly poisonous gas. They will also hope to continue with alarm giveaways throughout 2011.
Stacey Rodgers from Huddersfield, said: “The CO Angels came about following long discussions between Vikki, Melissa and I about losing our loved ones. We were all so frustrated at losing Dom, Tony and Bob, as their deaths could have been easily prevented by a carbon monoxide alarm.
“It is vital that as a first line of defence home owners, should make sure they get their appliances checked by a Gas Safe Engineer, all homes should have a carbon monoxide alarm.
“We don’t want anyone else to go through what we have gone through so this is why we are giving away carbon monoxide alarms. I’m going to be giving my 35 alarms away through my facebook status and the first 35 people to comment will receive a free alarm.”
Melissa Matthews, from Hertfordshire, said: “It’s so important for us to help raise awareness of carbon monoxide poisoning. It affects everyone, and by working under the CO Angels umbrella, we hope to raise even more awareness by persuading people to install an audible alarm in their homes.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank the O2 Think Big Project and BAA Stansted for their support in this awareness campaign. Thanks to them, we have even more alarms to hand out!”
Vikki Courtman, from Peterborough, added: “Although the three of us have met under unfortunate circumstances, we hope to be able to use our experiences to help raise awareness of carbon monoxide poisoning and prevent more needless deaths. We want everyone to have an alarm in their homes, and even if you are not lucky enough to get one through our giveaway, you can purchase them at a discounted price from our website: www.co-angels.co.uk “
Working in partnership with Sprue Safety Products, the market leader in carbon monoxide safety products, CO Angels can now offer FireAngel seven year CO alarms that comply with European Standard BS EN 50291:2001 and carry the BSi Kitemark.
Nick Hickman from Sprue Safety Products comments: “We’re proud to be supporting a group with such a passion for raising awareness. There is no question that CO alarms save lives. Everyone can be at risk from carbon monoxide, so if you’re reading this and wondering whether you’d survive a CO scare, please make sure you get protected today. For the sake of yourself and your families, let’s help prevent these tragic incidents occurring again.”
Carbon monoxide is a colourless, odourless and tasteless gas which is highly poisonous. It can come from appliances that burn fossil fuels such as gas, coal, wood or oil, if they’re not fitted correctly or not working properly.
All gas appliances should be checked annually by a Gas Safe registered engineer. Gas Safe Register replaced CORGI in 2010 in the UK, Isle of Man & Guernsey. Please visit www.gassaferegister.co.uk for more information.
TV doctor & GP Rob Hicks said: “I'm delighted to be supporting the CO Angels and the work they are doing in raising awareness of the dangers of carbon monoxide, something you can’t see, taste, or smell, which makes it a true silent killer. It’s so important we are all aware of the risks and symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, that we make sure fuel-burning appliances are regularly serviced, and that we fit a carbon monoxide alarm in our homes.”
To show your support for the CO Angels in their campaign to raise awareness of carbon monoxide, or to buy a carbon monoxide alarm, please visit http://www.co-angels.co.uk/
Stacey Rodgers lost her son 10-year-old Dominic in 2006 and since then has been campaigning to raise awareness of carbon monoxide poisoning. Dominic died as a result of carbon monoxide leaking into his home from next door.
“I put Dominic to bed unaware I wasn’t going to see him again. The next morning I found Dominic dead in his bed – that morning was the scariest thing I have been through; I didn’t know what had happened to him. I was angry and blamed myself. I didn’t know anything about carbon monoxide so I started to research it and within days realised this was something other people should know about and decided to start a campaign.”
Vikki Courtman’s boyfriend Bob Schenker died of carbon monoxide poisoning after experiencing nausea and headaches. Bob died of carbon monoxide from poor chimney maintenance.
“Bob died in his bed – it was the day my life changed forever. After months of toxicology tests, investigations on the boiler and investigations into the work on the chimney – it was confirmed the builder had blocked the flue due to negligence and ill work on the chimney, therefore preventing the exit of carbon monoxide from Bob’s house meaning it eventually poisoned him in his bed.
“Bob’s death resulted in a mother losing her son, a man losing his brother, an unborn baby never knowing her funny, witty kind uncle and me losing my dreams. This could have been prevented if Bob has simply had an audible CO alarm in his house.”
Melissa Matthews lost her brother Tony McRae in 1999. Tony died of carbon monoxide poisoning from a faulty gas grill.
“After an evening out with friends, Tony put bread under his gas grill, which happened to be faulty, to make toast. He forgot about it and went to bed. Sadly his grill was pumping out carbon monoxide and he never woke up. Tony was such a great person. He was a loving dad, caring son, awesome brother, fantastic friend and a real gem – and I’m not just saying that because he’s my brother – he really was. He would still be here if he had an audible carbon monoxide alarm.”
Carbon monoxide is a colourless, odourless and tasteless gas which is highly poisonous. It comes from fuel burning appliances which are not fitted correctly, are badly repaired or maintained such as fires, boilers, chimneys, gas cookers and water heaters. Gas, oil and solid fuels such as coal, coke and wood can all produce carbon monoxide.
Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning are similar to flu-like symptoms: headaches, nausea, dizziness, breathlessness, collapsing and loss of consciousness – which normally disappear when you leave home and come back when you return.
If you experience any of these symptoms, seek immediate medical advice from your GP or call NHS Direct on 0845 46 47 (NHS 24 in Scotland on 08454 242424)
If you suspect carbon monoxide call the relevant emergency advice line: Gas Emergency Service (24hr) 0800 111 999, Solid Fuel Advice Line 0845 601 4406, Oil (OFTEC) 0845 658 5080. If gas appliances are in the property, do NOT smoke, do NOT turn light switches on or off and do NOT do anything to create a spark. Get into the fresh air and do not return until your appliances have been checked and you’ve been told it is safe to do so.
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