SMEs fail to stay gas safe

Small businesses in Britain are putting workers and customers at risk as 18 per cent fail to install a carbon monoxide alarm.

Research has revealed that 21 per cent small businesses (SMEs) were not aware that failing to have an annual gas safety check could invalidate their insurance.

British Gas Business surveyed more than 500 SME owners and senior managers with responsibility for energy as part of gas safety week this week in a bid to increase awareness of the issue.

The majority of businesses (77 per cent) were aware that gas appliances need to be checked on an annual basis and 82 per cent had a Gas Safe registered engineer visit their workplace in the last year.

Gas Safe Register managing director Jonathan Samuel said: “When we think about gas safety many of us would automatically think of gas appliances like boilers, cookers or fires in our homes but this survey shows it is equally important to consider the workplace.

“Some of the obligations and responsibilities may differ, but the risks from an unsafe gas appliance remain the same. This Gas Safety Week, we encourage businesses of all shapes and sizes to check their gas appliances and keep employees and customers safe.”

Additionally, three per cent of respondents said that there would be no health risks from not taking annual gas safety checks with 79 per cent understanding that it could put lives at risk.  

British Gas Business managing director of business services James Bennett said: “Without safely functioning gas appliances and a secure gas supply, businesses could put their revenues and the safety of employees and customers at risk.

“British Gas Business is backing this campaign, to make sure all our customers know about their responsibilities. Every business should have its gas appliances checked and have an audible carbon monoxide detector.”