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2013 Industry News

Industry updates from 2013

Public Health Wales

In February 2013, we established a Carbon Monoxide (CO) Working Group comprising representatives of industry, the emergency services, Health and Safety Executive, local health boards, local authorities, Welsh Government and ROSPA. The group has links to UK-wide carbon monoxide work through Policy Connect and also the UK cross-government group on gas safety and CO awareness.

The group was set up in response to an increase in the number of CO incidents that had been reported within Wales. Its' goal is to enable greater understanding of work already ongoing to prevent and respond to CO incidents and can propose improvements where necessary.

The group aims to:

  • coordinate action in relation to work associated with carbon monoxide in Wales
  • prevent carbon monoxide exposures
  • improve the response to carbon monoxide incidents
  • improve the intelligence and information sharing in relation to carbon monoxide incidents

The work of the group will bring together work currently being done to address CO-related concerns in Wales leading to more coordination and collaboration between organisations.

If you would like any further information about the work of the Carbon Monoxide Working Group in Wales, please contact Heather Lewis at heather.lewis4@wales.nhs.uk.


Royal Voluntary Service

Royal Voluntary Service (formerly WRVS) is a registered charity founded in 1938 as the Women’s Voluntary Service for Air Raid Precautions, initially formed to recruit women into the ARP movement. After the war the organisation transformed to become a leader in the field of social care, pioneering many of the practices that formed the cornerstone of modern social services.

They provide a range of practical services to support up to 100,000 older people a month to live well, maintain their independence and play a part in their local community. These services are delivered almost entirely by its 40,000 volunteers.

Between September 2011 and May 2013 Royal Voluntary Service and Gas Safe Charity ran a campaign which aimed to increase the awareness of gas safety among vulnerable older people.

Beginning with a pilot in the South West of England and then 5 other regions across the country, the campaign reached over 8 million people through the distribution of leaflets, information sharing events, and word of mouth by meals on wheels volunteers and other partner organisations. It was supported by regional press and promoted on social media to ensure key safety messages were available to this audience.

Find out more about the risk to over 65's from faulty gas appliances.


Wolverhampton City Council in partnership with RoSPA 

Hundreds of Wolverhampton residents are to be given carbon monoxide detectors to help keep them safe thanks to a new initiative.

Wolverhampton City Council and the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) are working together to deliver the scheme in vulnerable households across the city.

As part of their Gas Safe initiative, RoSPA has provided 200 detectors that will be fitted free of charge through the council’s Handyperson scheme, which was launched in November last year.

Councillor Peter Bilson, Wolverhampton City Council’s Cabinet Member for Economic Regeneration and Prosperity, said:

“This is an excellent initiative that will benefit some of our most vulnerable households. Detectors such as these are potential lifesavers and we are delighted to be working in partnership with RoSPA to provide them, free of charge, to give residents peace of mind.”

Ashley Martin, RoSPA’s Public Health Project Manager, said:

“We are pleased to be working with Wolverhampton City Council as one of the partners in the Be Gas Safe programme which offers a really practical way in saving lives and reducing injuries. Carbon monoxide is known as the ‘silent killer’ because you cannot see it, taste it or smell it - this is why steps need to be taken to reduce the risk especially during the cold weather when we are all reliant on heating.”

If you'd like more information on this you can contact Wolverhampton City Council on 01902 551155 or email WHIS@wolverhampton.gov.uk.


Which? Local

Which? Local is a recommendations site with a difference. All reviews are made by Which? members and checked by our team of moderators. Our team check that businesses aren't recommending themselves!

To date, we have over 136,000 moderated reviews for local tradespeople and businesses on the site. We also have a forum where members and tradespeople can ask and answer questions.

We are strongly committed to gas safety and encourage our members to check whether the trader they are employing is listed on the Gas Safe Register and qualified to undertake the job in hand. Alongside each recommended boiler or gas installer on Which? Local, the Gas Safe logo is shown. This links through to an informative ‘about’ page.

Our advice articles on central heating, gas and boilers are also very popular with our readers.

We participated in the excellent Gas Safety Week 2013 and were delighted by how well this was received by consumers and gas professionals alike.


Northern Gas Networks

Over the past 12 months, we have gone further than ever before in our efforts to protect customers from the risks of carbon monoxide.

In spring 2013 we held a workshop with key stakeholders from across our network such as local councils, emergency response departments, schools and charities, and we have developed our carbon monoxide strategy based on the feedback we received.

The activities we're involved in include:

  • Gascoseekers - We’re rolling out advanced new Gascoseekers across the network, to give carbon monoxide nowhere to hide.
  • iCop - In autumn 2012 we successfully launched iCop, an imaginative smartphone app designed to raise awareness of CO poisoning among 18-24 year olds living in rented accommodation. The app takes the form of an interactive, film noir style detective.