Carbon monoxide is a dangerous gas which is released by the incomplete burning of fuels including coal, gas, wood and oil. It’s a colourless, odourless gas so it’s known as ‘The Silent Killer’ – you won’t know it’s there until you are suffering from the effects of inhalation.
The effects of carbon monoxide
When you breathe in carbon monoxide gas, it enters your blood stream, preventing oxygen from being carried around the body, which results in cell and tissue death. It can also damage blood vessels and cause brain swelling and nerve damage, eventually leading to death. If you inhale carbon monoxide, you may feel nauseous as well as having a headache and dizziness. Exposure to larger quantities can lead to confusion, vomiting, tiredness and abdominal pain. You should seek medical help straight away as exposure can be diagnosed with a blood test. Exposure to large amounts could lead to long-term damage to your heart or brain, although most people make a full recovery.
Don’t take risks
Boilers, cookers, fires and central heating should always be fitted by qualified professionals and maintained regularly to minimise the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. If they are incorrectly installed and develop a fault, they could leak carbon monoxide into the atmosphere. You should have your appliances checked annually and install a carbon monoxide detector. If you rent your own home, make sure your landlord or housing association carries out regular safety inspections of appliances. In the workplace, it’s your employer’s responsibility to keep you safe, and by carrying out regular risk assessments and maintaining equipment, risks should be minimised.
Claiming for carbon monoxide poisoning
If you have been forced to take time off work and seek medical treatment for carbon monoxide poisoning, or if you have suffered long-term damage, you should be able to claim negligence, whether this is against your landlord or your workplace. Claims for carbon monoxide poisoning are best dealt with through a lawyer specialised in negligence cases, and Accident Advice Helpline can offer confidential advice with no obligation to proceed with a claim. In most cases, your claim can be dealt with fully over the phone, so there is no need to attend court, and we offer a 100% no win, no fee* service, so you’ll keep more of what is rightfully yours. Call us today and see how we can help you to claim for employer negligence or landlord negligence – our friendly team are waiting to take your call 24/7, and our advice line is free to call.