Gas Safe Register has worked with gas safety experts and first responders to create a short film which highlights the importance of taking responsibility for gas safety.
Based on real situations, ‘The Ripple Effect’ depicts the devastating physical, emotional and psychological impacts that an innocent gas safety slip in one home can have on the wider neighbourhood.
More than two in five people (43%) feel an increased responsibility for the health and wellbeing of their neighbours since the start of lockdown, and over half (57%) saying they are taking better care of themselves specifically so they can do their part to protect the health of their neighbours.
But new inspection data from Gas Safe Register reveals one in every five homes on the average British street contains at least one dangerous gas appliance.
Experts are calling on neighbours to consider not just the health of those they live nearest to, but also their safety by warning of ‘The Ripple Effect – the devastating impact that one innocent gas safety slip can have on the whole community.
Paul Hull, a Gas Safe registered engineer from Surrey, says: “The Ripple Effect is very real when it comes to the wider impact of unsafe and faulty gas appliances within our own homes and our neighbourhoods. Left unserviced and unchecked year-on-year, appliances such as cookers, fires and boilers, can pose life-threatening risks, which can lead to – in some extreme instances – fires and explosions.
“What not many people do not realise, is that such incidences can also have a devastating ripple effect within their communities – from the potential of major structural damages to other homes in the area, to the disconnection of gas supplies for a number of weeks, which can be particularly distressing during the winter months.
“This is why it’s vital that people get clued up on how to stay gas safe within their homes– to help protect both themselves, their neighbours and loved ones.”
Despite this newly found and invigorated community spirit, when quizzed on gas safety, Gas Safe Register’s research shows that a lack of awareness of the signs and symptoms of unsafe gas, could be jeopardising people’s ability to responsibly look out for their neighbours.
Fewer than one in 10 people (9%) reported being very confident of being able to spot the signs of unsafe gas and, when put to the test, just 5% could correctly identify the six main signs of a dangerous gas appliance.
Just a third correctly identified escaping gas as having a rotten egg odour.
Gas Safe Register Chief Executive Jonathan Samuel said: “In the current climate, with so much to contend with, it’s easy to understand why people may overlook the importance of having gas boilers and household gas appliances serviced.
“However, today’s new research really shines a light on the knowledge gaps that still exist when it comes to the awareness of the signs and symptoms of unsafe gas appliances, which could be jeopardising people’s ability to responsibly look out both for their families, as well as their neighbours.
“Now, more than ever, it’s important that homeowners up and down the country are not unwillingly playing host to potentially life-threatening risks that could have a ripple effect within their neighbourhood, through faulty gas appliances.
“I would encourage everyone who does have gas appliances within their home, to book in their annual gas safety check with one our Gas Safe Registered engineers.”