Christmas is the most dangerous time of the year when it comes to gas safety in the UK, according to five years’ worth of data from the Gas Safe Register and Fire and Rescue Service.
More fires in households with gas appliances take place on Christmas day than any other day of the year and Gas Safe Register’s investigation team find a higher proportion of dangerous gas appliances in December that any other month.
A total of 17% of boilers, fires and cookers investigated in December over the last five years have been found to be unsafe.
As a fifth (19%) of households have not had their gas appliances legally checked this year, potentially 12 million people could be living with dangerous gas appliances.
While the majority of festive revellers prioritise buying (64%) and wrapping (41%) presents, only five per cent of British adults put gas appliance safety checks on their December to do list in the run up to Christmas. In fact, almost three times as many people prioritise watching their favourite Christmas film over making sure that they and their families are gas safe at Christmas.
Jonathan Samuel, chief executive at Gas Safe Register, said: “Although Christmas is a very busy time of year, it is really important your gas appliances have been checked and are running safely. With our data showing that December can be dangerous for homeowners, Gas Safe Register is reminding people to get their annual gas safety checks in the diary so this Christmas is a safe and enjoyable time.”
Gas safety – fire prevention tips
To stay gas safe this festive season, follow these top five Gas Safe Register’s top tips:
- Only employ a legal Gas Safe registered engineer when having gas work carried out in your home. You can find a registered engineer in your area by calling Gas Safe Register on: 0800 408 5500 or by visiting: GasSafeRegister.co.uk
- ‘Trust the Triangle’ and 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
- Sign up for a reminder service to make sure your gas appliances are checked annually: https://www.staygassafe.co.uk/
- Speak to your energy supplier to see if they can provide a free gas safety check
- 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
To find out more about the dangers posed by unsafe gas appliances in your area, visit: www.StayGasSafe.co.uk, and to find a Gas Safe registered engineer, call: 0800 408 5500 or visit: www.GasSafeRegister.co.uk.