Carbon Monoxide Awareness is a registered charity run entirely by volunteers and founded by Lynn Griffiths who, along with her young family, was poisoned by carbon monoxide at home for over a decade.
Lynn had never heard of carbon monoxide before she was poisoned and was so concerned that other families could fall victim to this silent killer that she decided to do something about it. Lynn works hard to support those who have been poisoned while trying to raise awareness about the dangers of carbon monoxide throughout the UK. However, Lynn believes she will be forced to wind the charity up at the end of the year due to a lack of funding.
The charity’s 7th National Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week takes place from 19-25 November and Lynn urgently needs your support to make sure the message of Carbon Monoxide Awareness reaches everyone in Wigan.
Carbon monoxide remains the biggest cause of accidental death by poisoning here in the UK and any fuel burning appliance may produce carbon monoxide if incorrectly installed, poorly maintained or subjected to abuse or damaged.
Every year thousands of people from across the UK are diagnosed with carbon monoxide poisoning others may continue to be unwittingly exposed to lower levels of this silent killer for years.
The symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning can include: headaches; drowsiness; nausea; muscular aches; high blood pressure; tinnitus; dizziness; pins and needles; fainting; incontinence; chest pain; loss of consciousness.
Some of these symptoms can mimic many common ailments and can easily be confused with flu, a virus, food poisoning or simple tiredness.
Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week aims to raise awareness of the dangers of carbon monoxide and of the measures you can take to reduce the risks. These include:
- Making sure all gas, oil, coal or wood burning appliances are serviced annually and your chimney is swept.
- Installing Carbon Monoxide alarms in the correct place and in date.
5 million homes in the UK are at risk from carbon monoxide poisoning and figures revealed by the Department for Health suggested that every year 4,000 people are diagnosed with low-level poisoning. The actual number of people affected is thought to be far higher but remains undetected because of a lack of awareness and the effects of such poisoning can cost the NHS up to £178 million a year. Unless we raise awareness the long team health problems will continue to put pressure on the government’s health budget.
More information can be found on the Carbon Monoxide Awareness website and you can follow them on Twitter @COaware.