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Warning Following Gas Powered Space Heater Use and Flood Damage

Following the recent devastating flooding around South Wales, some residents are utilising Gas Powered Space Heaters to dry out their properties. SWFRS would only recommend the use of Gas Powered Space Heaters in well ventilated spaces. Using them in under ventilated spaces could result in Carbon Monoxide (CO) poisoning.

South Wales Fire and Rescue Service, Head of Home Safety, Group Manager Neil Davies commented ‘We have recently attended incidents whereby residents are using Gas Powered Space Heaters to dry out their properties following the devastating flooding.

We would like to take this opportunity to remind and highlight to our communities that using this type of appliance in an under-ventilated space can cause the build-up of CO.

CO is a silent killer, with numerous deaths every year caused from accidental poisoning. You cannot see it, taste it or smell it, but CO can kill quickly with little warning. It’s extremely important to ensure you have a working CO alarm in your home as symptoms can be easily confused with just feeling unwell. It’s really important to fit a CO alarm in all rooms containing solid fuel, gas, or paraffin heaters. It’s also a good idea to familiarise yourself with the signs of CO poisoning, and learn what to do if you suspect someone may be affected.’

CO is a colourless, odourless, tasteless, poisonous gas produced by the incomplete burning of carbon-based fuels, such as gas, oil, wood and coal. Fuel-burning appliances such as stoves, fires, boilers and water heaters can also produce CO if they are incorrectly fitted, badly repaired or poorly maintained or if flues, chimneys or vents are blocked.