Wales & West Utilities is reminding people across Wales and the south west of England to be gas safe during the summer months.

With many householders thinking they only use gas in winter, the gas emergency and pipeline service is urging people to take three simple steps to stay ‘gas safe’ this summer.

  • Use the summer months to get your gas appliances serviced by a Gas Safe Registered Engineer. Even in the summer your gas boiler may be working even if your heating is off. You’re relying on gas for warm water and, depending on your cooker, it’ll be heating your family’s food too.
  • Never, ever use a BBQ indoors - whether that’s a home, tent, caravan or motorhome. Always keep an eye on it when you’re cooking, and even when it’s gone out, leave it outside as it can still release fumes
  • Be prepared in case of a gas emergency. If you smell gas, call us on 0800 111 999 at any time of day or night. And if you’ve had a BBQ and you feel dizzy, breathless or have flu like symptoms, it might not just be a bad burger, it could be carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning and you should seek medical attention immediately.

Clive Book, Head of Emergency Service at Wales & West Utilities said:

“Gas safety is just as important in summer as it is in winter and poorly maintained appliances and boilers can cause carbon monoxide poisoning, which can be deadly.

“It’s really important that even though the sun may be shining, people should stay vigilant in the summer months and this is why we’re urging people across the area to take these three steps to stay gas safe.”

Carbon monoxide is incredibly dangerous and is called the ‘silent killer’ because you can’t see it, smell it or taste it. It’s released when any fossil fuel doesn’t burn properly – and that includes charcoal from BBQ’s. Breathing it in can make you very unwell and it can kill. Each year across the UK approximately 40 people die unnecessarily as a result of CO poisoning, with a further 200 people hospitalised and 4,000 more attending Accident & Emergency Departments.

Clive continued:

“CO isn’t just a winter issue – it poses a risk all year round. With symptoms of CO poisoning like that of food poisoning and the flu – but without the high temperature – during summer people could put it down to a bad BBQ burger.

“By following these three simple steps people can make sure they stay gas safe year-round.”

More information on carbon monoxide poisoning can be found on Wales & West Utilities’ website

Wales & West Utilities has a team of more than 1000 trained and experienced engineers to help serve the 7.5m people across the south west of England and Wales that rely on its gas emergency and pipeline services. If anyone smells gas, thinks they have a gas leak, or suspects carbon monoxide poisoning, they should call us on 0800 111 999 and our engineers will be there to help, day or night. 

Our team is also working on a multi-million pound, 30-year gas pipe investment programme which began in 2002. Old metal pipes within 30 metres of buildings are being upgraded to new long-lasting plastic pipes with a lifespan of more than 80 years, to make sure homes and businesses continue to receive a safe and reliable gas supply now and in the future.