Do you know what carbon monoxide is or exactly how gas appliances put people at risk? Do people really still die from CO poisoning at home? And what does the new RTA legislation on gas safety mean for property managers and landlords?
Carbon Monoxide: Carbon Dioxide’s deadly cousin
Have you heard of carbon monoxide? It’s often confused with carbon dioxide (CO2), which is one part carbon to two parts oxygen. Carbon dioxide is what we exhale every time we breathe, and it occurs naturally in the earth’s atmosphere.
Carbon monoxide (CO) is one part carbon to one part oxygen. With its extra concentration of carbon, CO is like carbon dioxide’s deadly little cousin. It’s a colourless, odourless, tasteless gas, and if inhaled, it displaces the oxygen in a person’s lungs. This starves vital organs of oxygen and leads to carbon monoxide poisoning.
You might be thinking, “thanks for the chemistry lesson, but how does this apply to me?”
The thing is, carbon monoxide—the deadly, undetectable gas—is what gets emitted from faulty gas appliances into people’s homes. Inhalation of this gas can overcome a person in minutes, causing serious illness and death.
Does Carbon Monoxide really kill that many people?
Carbon monoxide poisoning is the stuff of nightmares, but does it really happen in modern homes in Australia? The short answer is yes.
In the past decade, countless Australians have suffered and even died due to carbon monoxide poisoning. In Victoria alone, at least nine people have died from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning since 2000 and hundreds more have been admitted to hospital.
In 2015, following a string of tragic carbon monoxide incidents, the Victorian Minister for Energy and Resources teamed up with Energy Safe Victoria. They spearheaded a safety campaign to educate unaware residents, landlords and property managers about the dangers relating to carbon monoxide poisoning from gas heaters and other gas appliances. The main recommendation of the campaign was that householders “find a gasfitter in the local area and have gas heaters serviced at least every two years” (Minister Lily D’Ambrosio, May 2015).
As Australia’s leading residential safety and compliance service provider, Detector Inspector has inspected thousands of homes for gas safety. Our data reveals that at least 1 in every 10 rental properties has a critical gas safety issue posing a significant health risk to the occupants.
So how do you keep people safe?
As a landlord or property manager, it’s your responsibility to ensure that gas appliances are checked regularly and meet compliance standards. From March 29, 2021, new inclusions in the Residential Tenancies Act make gas safety checks mandatory every two years in residential rental properties in Victoria.
Gas safety checks and services must be carried out by a properly qualified and licensed gas fitter. Managing these services on time for all properties and maintaining accurate records represents a huge administrative load for property managers.
Detector Inspector’s Safety Solutions
To meet the demands of new legislation and take the hassle out of your hands, we’ve developed an all-inclusive gas safety service for peace of mind. Gas appliances are checked and serviced every two years in accordance with legislation, with minimal administrative hassle for landlords or property managers.
All Detector Inspector gas services are completed by fully licenced gas fitters who can provide on-the-spot carbon monoxide test results from each gas appliance serviced. All of our compliance services are automatically documented to create a digital audit trail in case of an incident, and automatically scheduled year after year to maintain uninterrupted compliance coverage.
Bundle gas, smoke alarm and electrical safety and get a package discount with a Safer Home Package, our one-stop home safety solution with a single low annual fee.
Most importantly, Detector Inspector services are about more than just ticking a compliance box. Regular gas safety checks save lives.
Are you one of our current clients? Contact your Account Manager to learn more about the legislation changes, our gas safety service or our one-stop solution; the Safer Homes Package.
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