▪ Staff gearing up for 75,000 calls to National Gas Emergency Service
▪ Call 0800 111 999 if you smell gas or suspect a carbon monoxide leak
▪ One in four homes inspected in the West Midlands have unsafe gas appliances
Gas network company National Grid is urging people to stay safe this Christmas as staff gear up for 75,000 calls to its emergency hotline.
National Grid’s engineers and call-handlers will be working around the clock to make sure homes stay warm and gas supplies are safe over the festive period.
But as householders in the West Midlands fire up their gas cookers, boilers and fires for a feast of festive food and family get-togethers, National Grid is urging people to be extra alert to gas leaks and carbon monoxide poisoning.
John Duckworth, Head of Operations, Emergency Response and Repair West, said: “Call 0800 111 999 immediately if you smell gas or suffer the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning. They are: headaches, dizziness, nausea, breathlessness, collapse and loss of consciousness.
“Make a note of the number and keep it somewhere handy. Our engineers are working 24/7 to keep you safe - even on Christmas Day.”
Last year National Grid engineers attended 2,452 emergency calls across the West Midlands during the festive period (see notes to editors for a breakdown by area). Some 60 of these were on Christmas Day.
Here’s the number of calls National Grid will be dealing with while people enjoy these festive activities:
- Cooking the turkey – 291 calls*
- Christmas children’s blockbuster ‘Frozen’ – 150 calls
- Jools Holland’s Annual Hootenanny on New Year’s Eve – 368 calls
Faulty or badly maintained gas appliances can leak deadly carbon monoxide (CO) gas, causing death or serious injury. Figures show that a quarter of homes in the West Midlands inspected by Gas Safe Register – the official list of gas engineers registered to work legally on gas appliances – had unsafe appliances. National Grid has three simple life-saving tips:
- Ensure gas appliances are installed, maintained and fixed by a Gas Safe registered engineer
- Get your gas appliances checked annually by a Gas Safe registered engineer
- As a backup, buy and install an audible carbon monoxide detector. They can be bought for as little as £15, are simple to install and could save your life
A list of Gas Safe Registered engineers, who are qualified to work legally and safely on gas appliances, is available on the www.gassaferegister.co.uk website. Further information about the National Gas Emergency Service, along with advice about gas safety and helpful videos, can be found on at www.nationalgrid.com
Breakdown of the number of calls attended by emergency engineers over the Christmas and New Year period last year:
Bury St Edmunds & Ipswich 158
Harlow/Bishops Stortford 116
North London 3,616
Manchester Centre 229
Liverpool Centre 213
Ellesmere Port 117
St Helens 272
Kirby Lonsdale 102
Barrow in Furness 49
Birmingham Centre 391
Tamworth/Sutton/Great Barr/Kingstanding 401
Notes to editors - archive
National Grid is one of the largest investor-owned energy companies in the world and was named Responsible Business of the Year 2014 by Business in the Community. This accolade acknowledges all of our efforts in getting involve with the things that really matter to us and to society. We own and manage the grids that connect people to the energy they need, from whatever the source. In Britain and the north-eastern states of the US we run systems that deliver gas and electricity to millions of people, businesses and communities.
In Britain, we run the gas and electricity systems that our society is built on, delivering gas and electricity across the country. In the North Eastern US, we connect more than seven million gas and electric customers to vital energy sources, essential for our modern lifestyles.
National Grid in the UK:
- We own the high-voltage electricity transmission network in England and Wales, operating it across Great Britain
- We own and operate the high pressure gas transmission system in Britain
- Our gas distribution business delivers gas to 10.9 million homes and businesses
- We also own a number of related businesses including LNG importation, land remediation and metering
- National Grid manages the National Gas Emergency Service free phone line on behalf of the industry - 0800 111 999 (all calls are recorded and may be monitored).
- Our portfolio of other businesses is mainly concerned with infrastructure provision and related services where we can exploit our core skills and assets to create value. These businesses operate in areas such as Metering, Grain LNG Import, Interconnectors and Property. National Grid Carbon Ltd is a wholly owned subsidiary of National Grid. It undertakes Carbon Capture Storage related activities on behalf of National Grid.
Find out more about the energy challenge and how National Grid is helping find solutions to some of the challenges we face at www.nationalgridconnecting.com
National Grid undertakes no obligation to update any of the information contained in this release, which speaks only as at the date of this release, unless required by law or regulation.