WILL YOUR HOLIDAY ACCOMMODATION BE SAFE?

Self-catering holidays look set to be popular again this summer as staycations are here to stay – their rising demand driven by many factors including a rediscovery of the joys of holidaying within the British Isles.  But many of the flats and cottages used for holiday lets will have older gas fired boilers.  The Heating Helpline warns of the dangers of an older boiler and urges the owners and letting agents of holiday accommodation to have boilers checked and serviced.

3 May 2012It is claimed that the continuing popularity of ‘staycations’ is set to give the UK tourism industry a £7.3 billion boost this year.

Many factors have driven the rise in demand for ‘holidays at home’ - within the British Isles - including the weak pound, stretched family budgets and the impact of increasing Air Passenger Duty. In a recent survey a fifth of people opting for a staycation say they are doing so because they enjoyed a holiday in the UK last year, while a third said it would cut out the hassle of going to the airport.

And self-catering holidays look set to be popular again this summer, especially during the period of the London Olympics when holidaying families won’t want to miss ‘the greatest show on earth’ on telly.

With hundreds of thousands of British families therefore renting flats and cottages in the British Isles again this year the Heating Helpline (http://www.heatinghelpline.org.uk), the home heating advice service operated by B&ES (the Building & Engineering Services Association), says it’s vitally important that holiday homes with gas appliances have been regularly checked and serviced.

Blane Judd, Chief Executive of B&ES, comments, “Holiday home owners or their letting agents need to be aware that if they have an old boiler or other gas appliances like cookers in their holiday accommodation some of these will be potentially dangerous.

“Gas appliances in rented accommodation should be serviced annually in accordance with manufacturers’ instructions by a Gas Safe Registered installer in addition to having annual gas safety checks carried out on them.

“Landlords and letting agents must realise that failure to properly maintain a boiler puts holidaymakers’ lives at risk – poorly maintained or defective gas appliances can leak potentially lethal quantities of carbon monoxide (CO). Around 50 people still needlessly die every year from CO poisoning and hundreds more are made seriously ill, with some tragedies occurring in holiday lets.

“Anyone renting holiday accommodation in the UK should expect to see a copy of the gas safety certificate that is issued after the annual safety check, and the holidaymaker should not hesitate to contact the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) if the landlord cannot provide this.

“As additional safeguards, landlords or their letting agents should supply comprehensive operating instructions for all appliances and should also fit carbon monoxide detectors”.

All B&ES members are independently checked to verify their technical competence and customer service levels and B&ES members that operate in the domestic sector are all Gas Safe registered and members of TrustMark, the government-backed scheme that makes it easy for consumers to find reliable, reputable trades’ people.

To find a B&ES heating engineer contact the free Heating Helpline on 0800 810 8303 or visit the website at: http://www.heatinghelpline.org.uk.

Ends

Issued on behalf of the Building & Engineering Services Association (B&ES) by Next Step Marketing Ltd

Media enquiries to:  Heather Lambert.  Tel:  44(0)1256 472020;

Fax:  44(0)1256 471010; E-mail:  heather@nextstepmarketing.co.uk

Notes to editors

Since its formation in 1904, B&ES, the Building & Engineering Services Association (formerly the HVCA) has represented the interests of companies engaged in a wide range of building and engineering services including domestic heating and renewable technologies.

B&ES members are subject to regular, third-party inspection and assessment of their technical competence and commercial capability, carried out by an independent certification body at least every three years.

B&ES members who undertake gas installations are registered with Gas Safe – the gas safety watchdog body – and are also members of TrustMark, the Government-endorsed scheme designed to direct customers towards reliable tradespeople.

B&ES operates the Heating Helpline (http://www.heatinghelpline.org.uk) to provide consumers with free, impartial advice on every aspect of home heating.

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Next Step Marketing (NSM) is a marketing and communications agency based in north Hampshire. The business is headed up by Denzil Lee. Prior to setting up NSM Denzil spent 11 years as Director of Marketing for National Boat Shows Ltd (London Boat Show & Southampton Boat Show) and before that held other senior sales and marketing roles with two FTSE 100 PLCs. He has been a member of The Chartered Institute of Marketing since 1992, gaining Chartered Marketer status in June 1999. In November 2006 he was made a Fellow of the Institute. Since 1992 he has also been a member of The Marketing Society. We have worked across many different sectors with extensive experience of both consumer and B2B campaigns.

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