Gas Appliance Spares warning over accidental fires

For Home Fire Safety Week, GAS has got an offer to extinguish all others. A Honeywell XS100 fire alarm usually retails for around £18.99, but is now on offer for only £9.95 plus VAT

For Home Fire Safety Week, GAS has got an offer to extinguish all others. A Honeywell XS100 fire alarm usually retails for around £18.99, but is now on offer for only £9.95 plus VAT

Home Fire Safety Week is just around the corner and Gas Appliance Spares wants to raise awareness of the risk of accidental fires which can be caused by home appliances.

With the colder weather fast approaching, it’s that time of year when fires are being serviced in preparation for the winter months. It’s also a popular time for repairs, such as respraying the coals or replacing gas valves.

Home Fire Safety Week takes place on October 2-8, 2017. This presents an ideal opportunity to check that homes are safe, as small changes in everyday behaviour can reduce the risk of an incident occurring or escalating.

In 2016, over 200 people in the UK died from fires in the home. Some of these tragic deaths have occurred as a result of appliances which have been incorrectly installed,

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Gas Safety Week Jingle winner unveiled

James Elmy

James Elmy

A Gas Safety jingle being hummed, sung, or tapped along to, could potentially save lives. According to research, jingles rattle around our heads for an average of 50 hours a year! That’s 58 minutes a week, lasting around 17 minutes at a time. Imagine if those 58 minutes a week were spent thinking about Gas Safety?

Now, James Elmy, a.k.a @the24hrplumber from Beckenham in Kent, hopes that his memorable three-verse tune will be a lifesaver too after being unveiled as the Installers First Gas Safe Jingle winner. The full version can be seen on YouTube.

With an estimated five million unsafe gas installations currently in homes across the country, keeping our homes gas safe seems something many Brits are happy to forget about. And, fail to see the importance of employing a registered professional to check everything is working as it should.

Yorkshire and Humberside faired worst by employing the largest proportion of illegal fitters (77%), followed by the East Midlands (75%) and Londoners (72%). And, the

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Beware of carbon monoxide poisoning

Infographic offering stats about CO

Infographic offering stats about CO

This Gas Safety Week (September 18-24) Dr Ranj Singh is supporting Gas Safe Register to raise awareness of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning and its symptoms as a third (32%) of people would not recognise them, misdiagnosing symptoms for other illnesses.

CO poisoning is known as the ‘silent killer’ as it has no smell, taste or colour, and all the symptoms associated with CO poisoning can easily be mistaken for something else as today’s research shows.

Worryingly, nine per cent don’t know CO poisoning symptoms at all. These symptoms which include headaches, nausea, breathlessness, collapse, dizziness and loss of consciousness, would be misdiagnosed by many as:

  • Concussion (37%)
  • Meningitis (36%)
  • A panic attack (27%)
  • A stroke (22%)
  • Flu (19%).

Gas Safe Register is urging people to learn the symptoms of potential CO poisoning, and what action to take if they suspect they or someone in their family may be suffering from it.

Dr Singh said: “You can’t see, taste or smell CO, so it’s really important

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BMF launches new Cyber Security service…

The BMF Cyber & GDPR Audit Plus flyer

The BMF Cyber & GDPR Audit Plus flyer

The Builders Merchants Federation (BMF) has launched a new service, BMF Cyber Audit Plus, to help members to reinforce information security and to comply with new data protection laws which come into force in May 2018.

The General Data Production Regulation (GDPR) will create uniform data protection rules for EU member states. The government has confirmed that the UK’s decision to leave the EU will not affect the implementation of the GDPR and UK organisations that want to conduct business with the EU must be in compliance.

The new service is offered in partnership with RDS Tailored IT Solutions, who will provide BMF members with a free Cyber Risk Assessment and gap analysis of their current data management systems. They will also provide more information on the policies and processes the business needs to become compliant and avoid costly fines. Companies that do not provide adequate cyber protection for their customers will be penalised and could be fined by up to four

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WIT conference surpasses all expectations

The biggest gathering of female plumbers ever

The biggest gathering of female plumbers ever

Hattie Hasan (left) and Mica May (right) of Stopcocks Women Plumbers were delighted with the day’s events

Hattie Hasan (left) and Mica May (right) of Stopcocks Women Plumbers were delighted with the day’s events

The first ever Women Installers Together (WIT) Conference held last week in London proved to be such a success that organiser, Stopcocks Women Plumbers, is already looking forward to a second event next year.

Ninety-three women plumbers registered for the inaugural event, and only a few last minute withdrawals due to work commitments, prevented it from being a complete sell-out.

Women plumbers from as far as Belgium, as well as the Home Nations, made the event truly international and resulted in the largest gathering of females from the plumbing sector ever assembled in one room.

Mica May, co-director of Stopcocks, told the audience: “Anybody who is a minority will, unfortunately, experience discrimination. However, there are loads of us who really want to help people, want to create communities, and I’m certain that’s why you’re here.

“I do think it’s the isolation of women within the industry

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A roaring success for John Guest

Arburg apprentices have seen first-hand how John Guest operates.

Arburg apprentices have seen first-hand how John Guest operates.

An exchange programme between two heavyweights of European manufacturing has been labelled a roaring success by participants following its conclusion.

The joint initiative between John Guest and Arburg saw selected individuals from the two companies take part in an intensive four-week programme aimed at upskilling the next generation of apprentice engineers.

As part of this, participants from John Guest underwent a series of short placements within different departments at Arburg’s production facility in Lossburg, Germany, including pre-assembly, final assembly, injection moulding and robotics.

By gaining exposure to each stage of the manufacturing process, the young engineers came away with an improved knowledge of manufacturing best practice, providing them with a worthwhile insight into the philosophy and technical capability of their European counterparts.

In exchange, young apprentices at Arburg joined John Guest in its West Drayton manufacturing plant to understand more about the injection moulding process it undertakes throughout the production of its plastic push-fit connectors.

The programme marks the next step

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Elmhurst Energy welcomes government commitment…

Stuart Fairlie

Stuart Fairlie

Elmhurst Energy, the energy performance measurement specialist, has welcomed the government’s commitment to enforcing new Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards – particularly in the residential sector.

For those doubting the government’s commitment, Elmhurst Energy would point to a recent meeting between the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and the Residential Landlord’s Association (RLA), where the RLA was warned “in no uncertain terms” that the measures would come into force in April 2018 and that there would be no delay.

The RLA also suggest that landlords who do nothing will be in a very real risk of be fined for not complying, while they also highlight the fact that tradesmen may be busy over the deadline period.

Stuart Fairlie, technical director at Elmhurst Energy, said; “The new standards have been around since April 2016 and savvy landlords have been in discussions with energy assessors on how to best meet the requirements for their properties over the past couple of years. The minimum standard of ‘E’ is for

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Philmac invests £10k on workforce

Philmac has won an award for investing in its people

Philmac has won an award for investing in its people

Philmac has invested more than £10,000 in its workforce and brand identity to ensure it can continue to grow and strengthen its market-leading position.

Seeking to continue providing the best possible customer experience, Philmac has invested in a new revolutionary repetitive knowledge retention system to ensure the high levels of product advice and service it is known for are maintained.

Based on the principle of repetition and engagement, the new training tool has been rolled out to all customer-facing staff to enable them to refresh and retain their knowledge on all areas of the business including products, order processing and delivery and logistics.

It is initiatives such as this that have contributed to Philmac recently achieving the Investors in People standard, recognising its commitment to people management through its continuous training and development of its workforce.

Following a comprehensive assessment, Philmac gained the Investors in People award for demonstrating clear leadership skills, creating a positive working environment and developing a

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Building controls to play major role in the future

Controls help to provide a much healthier environment to work in.

Controls help to provide a much healthier environment to work in.

The Building Controls Industry Association (BCIA) is calling upon the sector to embrace wellbeing into their business culture to address the ongoing skills shortage.

Wellbeing is a growing trend, one which is here to stay. Research has shown that wellbeing is vital in attracting and retaining individuals in their professional capacity. However, it is not yet a major focus on all business agendas.

In this tough economic climate, there is increasing competition for talent across all industries. Understanding the impact of wellbeing will go a long way in not only attracting fresh new talent, but also in retaining industry stalwarts.

An organisation that considers the wellbeing of its workforce will be a popular choice as an employer. It has been proven that employees who feel comfortable in their working environment, will feel more loyal and connected to their organisation and go that extra mile in their work.

In 2016, sick days in the UK cost over £137 million to

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Building company director escapes jail term

HSE investigated the case

HSE investigated the case

A director of a building company has been sentenced to 200 hours community service after a family of four were hospitalised following exposure to carbon monoxide (CO).

Manchester (Minshull Street) Crown Court was told that SJW Joinery & Building and director, Simon Wiley, had been contracted by the homeowners to carry out building work at the house in Stalybridge. A single storey extension had been erected around parts of the property.

The roof of that extension had been built over the existing flue to the boiler, leading to it venting into an enclosed space. The products of combustion of the boiler, including the toxic and odourless gas carbon monoxide (CO), built up in the extension and entered the house. Four people were taken to hospital with CO poisoning. All four made a full recovery.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) launched an investigation after National Grid notified it of the incident. The enquiry found that building plans relating to the work showed that risks of CO

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