Competition for children – win cash, have fun & learn about carbon monoxide poisoning

All four gas distribution networks run this competition but there is a good article about it that I’ve just read at

This is the competition CO-Gas Safety started but taken to an even better level by the gas distribution networks. Please enter and pass on the word to friends and family.

It is really important to your safety to learn about how to avoid carbon monoxide (CO). The charity doesn’t want to hear about anyone dying or being injured by unintentional carbon monoxide poisoning. Learn how to avoid CO, have fun and raise awareness and maybe win the competition! What you learn doing this will protect your whole family all your life. Do please let us know if from learning about CO, you save your life or the lives of your pets or those of family and friends. We’d love to hear from you. Closing date is 30th September. Stephanie My email is or you can phone me on 07803 088688.

Sad News of the death of Baroness Maddock

Baroness Maddock, who was our Lib Dem MP when she was an MP and was extremely helpful with regard to landlords’ gas safety checks, very sadly died on the 26th June 2020. CO-Gas Safety would like to send sympathy to her family and friends and express the charity’s thanks for all the work she did for the charity.

As an MP she had insisted that the tenant be served with a gas safety certificate before signing any agreement or entering premises and every 12 months thereafter which CO-Gas Safety completely supported. This was partly the subject of judicial proceedings and the issue described just may go to the Supreme Court because this issue was not fully dealt with in the case of Gas Safety Records and Possession Proceedings: Trecarrell House Limited V Rouncefield [2020] EWCA Civ 760

Pilot of floatplane probably affected by carbon monoxide – 6 dead

Please see 

This floatplane crash happened in 2017 yet it seems that only after all other causes of the crash had been investigated was carbon monoxide poisoning suspected and tested for in March 2020. Why did it take so long?

There is a call for sensors – even small sensors that cost only a couple of ££ (mainly used by pilots of small planes) but of course the aviation industry is stalling. Pilots seem reluctant to buy their own but it’s their lives as well as their passengers so surely it’s worth their while to buy them?

It’s not just CO – there is a “cocktail” of toxic substances making it impossible to nail the health damage down to only one substance. EASA tested 127 substances present.

Medical testing and info for professionals kindly provided by Bearnairdine Beaumont – she hopes that perhaps some of it will be useful.

Symptoms of CO being confused with Covid-19

Please read

Our concern has always been that symptoms of carbon  monoxide (CO) can be confused with symptoms of any virus. The fact that the gas emergency service lacks the equipment to test the air or gas appliances for CO is obviously now even more worrying. We have raised this issue with IGEM and the GDNs who run the gas emergency service.

Due to CO leaving the blood and breath quickly in a survivor, testing a person’s blood or breath for CO can produce the danger of a false negative.

The First Call Operators (FCO) from the gas emergency service do wear Personal Alarm Monitors (PAMs) for CO but when someone calls the gas emergency service s/he is told to turn off the appliances, open the windows and get out. Therefore by the time the FCO arrives the CO will usually have disappeared. So PAMs protect the FCOs, but not the consumers. 

Stephanie has written to IGEM and the GDNs (who run the gas emergency service) about the fact that the lack of testing of the air or the emissions from the gas appliances has always been needed but with Covid-19, testing the environment is even more vital.

Sad News

Co-founder of CO-Gas Safety and President and Director of Consumer Safety International, Molly Maher, very sadly died on Thursday 23rd April 2020.

Molly courageously campaigned after the death of her son, Gary from unintentional carbon monoxide (CO) from a gas water heater in Tenerife in 1985. Her daughter, Sheree was poisoned in the same incident and was paralysed for a year, becoming a wheelchair user. Sheree admirably retained her sharp brain and zest for life.

Molly spent many years raising awareness of the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning. Her great cry was ‘keep a window open’. She tried to persuade those in the tourist industry, hoteliers, the fuel industry and governments in the UK and Spain to raise awareness, service properly, ensure ventilation and install CO alarms. Many people both abroad and in the UK, owe their health and their lives to Molly’s work, yet have no idea that they do.

Molly was told by the authorities in Tenerife that there were CO problems in the UK.  At first she didn’t believe them and maintained that in the UK there was the Health & Safety Executive. However, she was shocked to find that indeed there were huge problems in the UK and all over the world. Indeed, even in the UK, there is still a lack of awareness of the dangers of CO from all fuels, a lack of a test of the air or appliances for CO by the gas emergency service and a lack of specific support for victims/survivors of CO, who can rarely prove poisoning.

Along with the now late David Jenkins of RoSPA and Nigel Griffiths, then an MP, Molly founded CO-Gas Safety, which was launched at the House of Commons on the 25th January 1995. This was an independent, registered charity as was CSI. CO-Gas Safety, headed by Stephanie Trotter, looked exclusively at CO and other gas dangers. CO-Gas Safety worked to reduce deaths and injuries from unintentional carbon monoxide and other gas dangers and to help victims and their families.

CSI covers all holiday dangers. Molly and Stephanie had met while Stephanie was campaigning for children’s activity holiday centres to be licensed after an injury, a clot on the brain, was suffered by Stephanie’s son Alex, aged 12 in 1992 while at a sailing centre. Molly helped Stephanie with this campaign because CSI was all about safer holidays. This campaign to license children’s activity holidays in the UK was thankfully successful and there is now the Activity Centres (Young Persons’ Safety) Act 1995. Sadly scouts etc. and university students are still not covered, despite Stephanie’s pleas that they should be.

Stephanie learned a great deal about campaigning from Molly, how difficult it is and how much of a roller coast experience it is. Molly never stopped campaigning and her courage and determination will be greatly missed.

The struggle to do what most people assume is done but isn’t, to put in place what most people say is just common sense, continues. But true campaigners have lost an inspiration; CO-Gas Safety has lost a founder with guts.

Frank Brehany, who ran Holiday Travel Watch and has known Molly as long as Stephanie has put out a press release which he has kindly shared with CO-Gas Safety

Sian Overton makes a film about her older sister Katie dying of CO

Sian Overton, is the younger sister of Katie Overton. Katie died of CO in 2003 aged eleven and a half. Sian was then only seven years old. Sian describes her memory of what happened and how it affected her life and the whole family.

The film ends with a plea that this must not happen to anyone else and provides advice on how to prevent such a tragedy.