Update on the death of Nikki Willis

Mrs Michelle Hindson

45 Fox Crescent



CM1 2BN                                                                                                                                                                                                  



An open letter to whom it may concern. (2nd email) 


I am writing you all at once with the hope that we as a family may finally get some help with an issue that we feel needs tackling.

Allow me to explain briefly, in December 2016 our 23 year old daughter was found along with her friend, dead inside a modified car, the cause ruled at an inquest as carbon monoxide poisoning as a result of the car being inadequately modified.

2 years down the line and we still miss her every day,

We have been in correspondence with Chris Grayling MP, who via whatever means he has available has had an information sheet published; this is now available on the Gov.uk website.  Within this information sheet it states that under the Road Traffic Act 1988 (section 42) it is an offence to use an on road vehicle which has been modified in such a way that it no longer complies with the air pollutant emissions standards it was designed to meet, the penalties of £1000 per car and £2500 per bus, van or lorry are also enforceable, it goes on to state that it is an offence to alter a vehicle in such a way that the use of the vehicle on a road would be unlawful, this also carries potential unlimited fines.

Our daughter paid way more than a fine for being in a passenger in a badly modified car, She  lost her life.

The law is out there but no one so far seems to be taking responsibility for enforcing it.

The car had been modified in such a way that it was not safe, or road legal, the emissions produced were 1000 times higher than the legal limit required to pass an MOT, but this went undetected as it was a newer car and was therefore exempt from any MOT, this car was driving around the roads throwing out huge amounts of deadly gases and unlike poorly maintained cars with lights not working or tyres that are worn, this is an issue that cannot be seen, heard or smelt, but can still kill so why is it not being taken seriously??

So to the police I ask why can they not enforce this when carrying out roadside checks?

To the Government I ask why is this law out there if it is not being enforced?, both from a traffic problem but also an air pollution perspective.

To the DVSA I ask why are we just looking at HGVS and buses, when cars can be just as lethal?

To the Motor industry why are carbon monoxide detectors not fitted as a safety feature within cars? If you can install windscreen wipers to detect rain why not install something that can save a live.

Whilst what happened to our daughter is not an everyday occurrence, it still happened, and it shouldn’t have done, and it shouldn’t be ignored, it could happen again.


Information links –


www.chelmsfordweeklynews.co.uk/news/15172840.VIDEO police release forensic footage that show what led to the deaths of Tom Putt and Nikki Willis



Awaiting a hopeful response.


Michelle Hindson

Article in Gi Magazine September 2018

This article was about carbon monoxide, the silent killer. I was delighted to be able to submit this material and nearly all of my submission was published.

However, when I wrote this article in early summer 2018 I didn’t know about the Gas Safe Register’s policy Please see https://www.gassaferegister.co.uk/media/2376/consumer-policy-our-service-explained.pdf and for tenants see 8.2 which says the following:- 

‘If you are a tenant, we will seek permission from your landlord before undertaking our

investigation. However, if you do not wish to engage your landlord, we will only be able

to conduct a visual inspection of the installation. Whilst we accept your request this will

limit the extent and effectiveness of our investigation into your complaint.

Note: Where we identify gas related safety defects we may be obliged to inform your

landlord or their agent, where known.’

We think this is wrong and means tenants basically cannot obtain a free test of their gas appliances for carbon monoxide unless they obtain the landlord’s permission. Most tenants are far too frightened of being evicted or harassed to seek such permission.

Download the PDF or view the JPEGs below:


Attended prize giving at the Attlee Suite, Portcullis House on 28th June 2018

Attended this joyful occasion which was brilliantly organised by many but particularly Georgina Bailey, Gerarda Kendrick and Adrian McConnell but no doubt there are many others who also contributed.
Everyone enjoyed it hugely – I know I did. It was wonderful to find that the CO awareness competition had been taken on fully and extended so well. There was even a teacher who had won when I ran it and it was so good to see him again.
I also saw Emmi Isham responsible for ‘Safety Seymour’ (a teddy bear) introduced I think by Cadent and who I met a couple of years ago. Safety Seymour is now used by I think all the GDNs to raise awareness of CO in primary schools. Emmi and I were delighted to see each other again and I raised the importance of raising awareness of CO in refugee camps. I suggested we contact the United Nations and extend Safety Seymour’s fame. I have tried all my contacts and have now raised this with the GDNs, particularly Phil Burrows of Cadent and Tom Bell of Northern Gas Networks, chair of the group of GDNs who are trying to interest their PR people.
Barry Sheerman MP kindly suggested I send him some more PQs which I have done. Will they be asked? I hope so.

Attended a meeting with npower and Audrey Gallagher of Energy UK

This was an excellent meeting which gave us huge hope. Matt Cole of npower hosted the meeting and Audrey Gallagher of Energy UK attended and listened to our main problems which are the law on landlords’ gas safety checks and CO alarms in the rented sector, lack of awareness and lack of proof. Further details of matters discussed will be put on the website.
Attendees were also Ben Kuchta representing gas installers, Laura Parkes PR for npower and Amy Archer, PR for CO-Gas Safety