This section aims to provide information about equipment that can help you remain safe in your own home.
CO is produced by the incomplete burning of natural gas or liquefied petroleum gas (LPG). This happens when a gas appliance has been incorrectly fitted, badly repaired or poorly maintained. It can also occur if flues, chimneys or vents are blocked.
Modern CO alarms are similar in design to smoke alarms (which do not detect CO) and can be purchased from around £15 at many major retail outlets including DIY stores and supermarkets.
If a person living at home is unable to react to a CO monitor alarm, smart CO alarms can send an alert to anyone away from the home and are available to purchase privately, or alarms linked to a monitoring service can be provided by the Pembrokeshire Community Alarm Service following an assessment of need.
The Mid & West Wales Fire & Rescue Service offer free a Home Fire Safety Check to those living in their own or privately rented homes in order to reduce the risk of fire and to be aware of any vulnerable people in the home. They are able to fit free stand-alone equipment such as smoke alarms and heat sensors or, for the hard of hearing, vibrating pillows. They work closely with the Pembrokeshire Community Alarm Service to fit equipment linked to a monitoring service if a person is unable to react to an emergency situation.
Smart smoke detectors are available to purchase privately and can send an alert to anyone away from the home - being especially helpful for a person who may not be able to react to an emergency within the home.
Safety in the kitchen is a common concern, especially for those living by themselves and/or who have a cognitive impairment. You may wish to consider investing in a modern gas cooker with an integrated Flame Supervision Device which will check to ensure there is a flame at any burner in operation. If for any reason the flame is extinguished, the device automatically shuts off the supply of gas to the affected burner, preventing an accumulation of gas.
Suitable for people who can no longer operate their gas cooker safely, such as people living with Alzheimer’s or Dementia who may be at risk of harming themselves and their home by leaving gas unignited or forgetting to turn the hob off, Locking Cooker Valves allow the cooker to be used under supervision, and locked in the off position when the key holder leaves the house or room, while their family or carer will have peace of mind that they will not come to harm when they are alone. These valves are currently being supplied to Wales & West Utilities Priority Customers free of charge.
Household Gas Detectors are widely available on the market and offer an economical way of raising an alarm (without the need to have a gas shut-off valve) in the event an appliance is leaking gas.
The risk of forgetting to light a gas ring or a gas fire increases when people experience difficulties with their memory. Gas Shut Off Valves physically cut the gas supply when triggered by a gas detector sensor connected to a telecare control box. A key operated switch on the control box is used to switch the gas supply back on when the reason for the leak has been investigated. These shut off valves would be fitted and reset only by registered Gas Safe fitters and are not provided by Pembrokeshire County Council.
Damaged or faulty electric blankets cause around 5000 fires a year in the UK. The Mid and West Wales Fire Service carry out free safety check of electric blankets.
For more information about electric blanket safety please refer to advice provided by Electrical Safety First.