Flue Supplies News

  • New Rules for Gas Flues Introduced by the HSE

    At the beginning of the year, the Health and Safety Executive  introduced new rules regarding gas flues fitted in void spaces or behind walls or ceilings.

    From January, Gas Safe engineers have the authority to declare a boiler "at risk" if they have no ability to inspect and access the entire flue. Then, with householders permission, they have the right to turn off the system and advise households not to use the boiler until inspection hatches have been put into place.

    These rules will apply mainly to flats and apartments and so Landlords who own such properties, which usually have room-sealed fan assisted boilers, need to be aware of the new regulations. It will be the responsibility of the Landlord to ensure that these measures are put into place and an annual gas safety certificate is carried out.

    Hatches must be fitted within 1.5m of a join in the flue and must be a minimum of 300mm square.

    Quoted from https://www.onlineprnews.com/news/346449-1361176070-gas-safety-update-for-flue-in-voids-introduced-by-hse.html
  • Three people die in Carbon Monoxide Fatality

    Three people from Cornwall, an elderly couple and their daughter, have passed away following a Carbon Monoxide leak at their home.

    It is thought that the three adults, including their pet dog, died after poisonous fumes escaped from a portable heater in their static caravan.

    President and director of the independent charity CO-Gas Safety, Stephanie Trotter, said carbon monoxide is an incredibly lethal gas whereby "less than two per cent of CO (carbon monoxide) can kill in between one and three minutes".

    A Carbon Monoxide Alarm is designed to detect the presence of the odourless gas and alert a family in a similar fashion to how a smoke detector works in the event of a fire. The fire service have been trying to promote the use of carbon monoxide alarms in the home to the public, and particuarly holidaymakers in regards to the dangers of using portable BBQs and portable heaters. This is following a number of fatalities to holidaymakers over recent years, who have bought BBQ's or heaters into caravans or tents to keep warm.

    Our thoughts are with the family and friends of those involved in this tradgedy.

    (Quoted from: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/9890486/Cornwall-caravan-park-deaths-warnings-on-carbon-monoxide-poisoning-risks.html )
  • Carbon Monoxide- the silent killer

    From: https://www.hetas.co.uk/consumer/carbon-monoxide/

    Carbon Monoxide

    Carbon Monoxide (CO) is an extremely poisonous gas that can be present in the fumes from the combustion of fuel’s which aren’t burnt under the correct conditions. Fuels such as gas, oil,  solid mineral fuel and biomass all have the potential to emit CO. The gas cannot be seen, smelled or tasted making it difficult to detect.

    The symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning

    The early symptoms of CO poisoning are usually similar to common ailments such as upset stomach, tiredness and flu.

    The common symptoms can include:

    • Headaches
    • Breathlessness
    • Nausea and/or vomiting
    • Dizziness or Collapse
    • Chest and/or stomach pains
    • Erratic behaviour and/or Visual problems

    Actions to take in a CO emergency

    • If you suspect fumes are escaping from your combustion appliance into your home, or your carbon monoxide alarm goes off.
    • If your appliance is automatically fed with fuel, turn the appliance off.
    • Open doors and windows to ventilate the building.
    • Leave the building immediately and don’t return until your appliance or boiler has extinguished and the air in the room is clear.
    • If you feel unwell go to your Doctor, call NHS Direct on 0845 4647 or, if it is urgent phone 999 for an ambulance. Tell them you feel your symptoms may be related to carbon monoxide poisoning.
    • Before you reuse the appliance, have it serviced and the chimney swept by a HETAS registered installer or approved chimney sweep.
    • Do not use the appliance until you are told it is safe to do so.

    Protect yourself from CO

    • Have your appliance serviced and cleaned regularly by a HETAS registered installer.
    • Ensure your chimney is kept clear by having it swept at frequent intervals by a HETAS approved chimney sweep.
    • Make sure the installation complies with Building Regulations guidance. The guidance is there to protect you.
    • Fit an audible CO alarm conforming to BS EN 50291 and positioned in accordance with Building Regulations Approved Document J requirements.

    CO alarms should be regularly tested and should not be regarded as a substitute for regular maintenance of the appliance and chimney.

    Also, don't forget to test your smoke alarms too!

  • Against opposition, UK enters into Home Energy-Efficiency Programme

    In January, The U.K. started a program to help improve home energy efficiency amid criticism that its Green Deal will fail to lure households that risk paying more for improvements than they save on bills.

    From January, the UK's 26.9 million homes have been able to upgrade their power bills to include loft or wall insulation in a bid to improve efficiency and lower overal power costs.

    Although Energy Secretary Ed Davey has said that "repayments shouldn't exceed efficiency savings", the Government cannot guarantee this and many believe, particuarly the oppositon Labour Party, that the Green Deal could "end up costing people more than they save".

    According to Davey, "Nearly 8 million homes have solid walls. Only 2 percent have been insulated... a three-bed semi detached house could save £275 a year if insulated under the scheme... There are huge savings for people living in those homes and a huge amount of carbon that can be saved to go towards our climate change targets".

    To meet targets, the UK needs to cut energy demand to lower carbon emmissions by 34% by 2020, whilst also reducing consumer power bills as the cost of fossil fuels rise. According to the Department of Energy and Climate Change, the UKs buildings are amongst the world's least efficient and account for 38% of Britain's Greenhouse gas emissions.

    EON, British Gas and SSE are amongst the energy providers who have signed up to the scheme.

    (Quoted from an article published Jan 27,2013 by Sally Bakewell and Alex Morales of Bloomberg).

  • Safety Tips from East Sussex Fire and Rescue

    Speaking to the Eastbourne Herald yesterday, Community safety manager Steve Wright said: “Chimney fires are a common cause of fire in dwellings and can cause widespread damage.

    “An open fire is an ideal way to keep warm this winter but without proper maintenance a chimney can become dangerous. In the last two years alone we have attended more than 420 incidents involving chimney fires.”

    East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service have offered the following safety tips for people to follow:

    • Make sure you have a working smoke detector installed in your property.
    • Ensure your chimney is swept regularly.
    • Keep chimneys and flues clean and well maintained.
    • Be careful when using open fires. Make sure you always protect against flying sparks from hot embers.
    • Ensure the fire is extinguished before going to bed or leaving the house.
    • Chimneys should be swept according to the type of fuel used (always consult your NACS chimney sweep for advice).
    • Never interrupt the air supply by blocking air vents.

    To find a certified chimney sweep, or for more information on chimney fire safety, visit www.nacs.org.uk - External Link or guildofmasterchimneysweeps.co.uk/

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