A GAS provider is reminding people across Cornwall to be "gas safe" during the summer months.

With many householders thinking they only use gas in winter, Wales & West Utilities is urging people to take three simple steps to stay safe.

It suggests:

* Use the summer months to get your gas appliances serviced by a Gas Safe Registered Engineer. Even in the summer your gas boiler may be working even if your heating is off. You’re relying on gas for warm water and, depending on your cooker, it’ll be heating your family’s food too.

* Never, ever use a BBQ indoors - whether that’s a home, tent, caravan or motorhome. Always keep an eye on it when you’re cooking, and even when it’s gone out, leave it outside as it can still release fumes

* Be prepared in case of a gas emergency. If you smell gas, call us on 0800 111 999 at any time of day or night. And if you’ve had a BBQ and you feel dizzy, breathless or have flu like symptoms, it might not just be a bad burger, it could be carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning and you should seek medical attention immediately.

Clive Book, Head of Emergency Service at Wales & West Utilities said: “Gas safety is just as important in summer as it is in winter and poorly maintained appliances and boilers can cause carbon monoxide poisoning, which can be deadly.

“It’s really important that even though the sun may be shining, people should stay vigilant in the summer months and this is why we’re urging people across Cornwall to take these three steps to stay gas safe.”

Carbon monoxide is incredibly dangerous and is called the ‘silent killer’ because you can’t see it, smell it or taste it. It’s released when any fossil fuel doesn’t burn properly – and that includes charcoal from BBQ’s. Breathing it in can make you very unwell and it can kill. Each year across the UK approximately 40 people die unnecessarily as a result of CO poisoning, with a further 200 people hospitalised and 4,000 more attending Accident & Emergency Departments.

More information on carbon monoxide poisoning can be found on Wales & West Utilities’ websitewww.wwutilities.co.uk