Ealing Council has pledged its support for Gas Safety Week (13 – 19 September 2021), which aims to raise awareness about the importance of gas safety.
The week sees organisations from across the UK working together to raise awareness of the dangers of poorly maintained gas appliances, which can cause gas leaks, fires, explosions and carbon monoxide poisoning.
This year, Gas Safety Week is addressing a whole range of safety matters for gas users across the country – from advice about how to stay ‘gas safe’; to raising awareness of using a registered engineer who is legally qualified, which ensures you do not suffer from the effects of illegal gas work through a lack of awareness.
Ealing Council plays an important role in gas safety across the borough, by ensuring its own social homes are compliant and through its private rented property licensing schemes. All gas installations in council properties are regularly checked, and all rented property licences come with conditions to ensure the home meet strict gas safety standards. Licences are only granted once up-to-date, valid gas safety certification is provided. The council has recently consulted on extending the schemes.
The housing service is also working closely with the gas safety regulator to address the gas safety risks in a number of large panel systems (LPS) buildings. Contractors recently removed a boiler from inside one of these blocks and replaced it with one located more safely outside the main building. Another block has been converted entirely from gas to electrical appliances so that the gas supply can be disconnected.
Councillor Lauren Wall is the council’s cabinet member for genuinely affordable homes. She said: “The safety of our residents is our top priority, which is why we work hard to mitigate the risks associated with gas wherever possible. Our specialist contractors inspect gas appliances in our tenants’ homes at least once a year, ensuring that their boilers, cookers and fires are safe.”
Councillor Shital Manro is the council’s cabinet member for good growth. He said: “For residents who live in privately rented homes, property licensing is helping us deliver safer and better conditions. Over the last five years, it has helped us to raise standards for tenants and provide better support for landlords. We are now considering extending our private rented property licensing schemes, to ensure that even more residents benefit from them.”
Jonathan Samuel, chief executive for Gas Safe Register, said: “It’s great to see so many people supporting Gas Safety Week this year to help share important and, in some cases, lifesaving advice about gas safety. The last year or so has taught us the vital importance of helping and supporting those in our communities. Ensuring people always use a suitably qualified Gas Safe registered engineer to work on gas appliances in their homes is a great way to show how we can work together to stay gas safe.’’
To keep you and your family safe, follow Gas Safe Register’s top tips:
- Know the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning; headaches, nausea, breathlessness, collapse, dizziness and loss of consciousness.
- If you smell gas or think there might be a gas leak, call the free 24-hour national gas emergency number immediately on 0800 111 999.
- Never attempt to work on a gas appliance yourself, always seek the help of a qualified Gas Safe registered engineer who can work on your gas cooker, boiler or fire in a safe way.
- Do not cut corners – only employ a suitably qualified Gas Safe registered engineer when having gas work carried out in your home.
- Always ask to see your engineer’s Gas Safe ID card. Make sure you check the back of the card, which will state which gas appliances they are qualified to work on.