A warning was issued after a family was nearly killed by carbon monoxide poisoning.
Nicola Savory, her partner Lee Tonks and their sons James (five) and Harry (two) were hours before the tragedy when an emergency gas engineer called.
Her Bedworth, Warwickshire home had been filled with deadly carbon monoxide from a broken boiler flue.
They didn’t know anything about it, although the mother had red circles around her eyes and the father had slept.
The gas engineer only made the discovery following a phone call to a neighbor whose CO alarm had been triggered about the leak.
The family were immediately rushed to the hospital and left in tears of relief as they narrowly escaped.
Now they are calling on others to make sure they are doing one simple thing – have a carbon monoxide alarm in their home.
The family had no alarm on the day of the incident.
However, a neighbor’s alarm went off after it reached a low level – which resulted in a call for 34-year-old Cadent gas engineer Mo Dawood.
It was that simple phone call and thoroughness from Mr. Dawood that saved the family.
As part of his inquiries, Mr. Dawood went to Ms. Savory’s address and knocked on the door.
While waiting for someone to reply, he followed the procedure and put his gas detection reader in the mailbox.
To his complete shock, he found that the house was flooded with a potentially fatal dose.
Mr Dawood said, “The CO reading I just got was so massive I couldn’t believe it.”
The reading was almost 600 ppm CO – a value that is fatal if exposure lasts for a few hours.
He said, “Nobody answered so I gave the door a real bang and a lady (Mrs. Savory) finally came to the door.
“I could immediately see that she had large red circles around her eyes, so I ordered her and everyone in the house to get out of the car as soon as possible.
“Father (Mr. Tonks) came to the door but didn’t look right. He said he was in bed because he’d been on rugby the night before and had a couple of beers. He started shaking and collapsed. “
The family was taken to Coventry University Hospital where they were treated for carbon monoxide poisoning.
Mr. Dawood said, “When I think back, I remember that I quit my previous job earlier than expected, which meant I got there earlier – that turned out to be so important in this case.” If I had got there later, we might have looked at a different situation. “
Two years later, the couple urge people to follow Cadent’s safety advice.
This is easy and can save your life: have the boiler serviced and buy annually and install an audible CO alarm.
The family’s plea precedes Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week, which runs through November 29th.
“Someone looked down on us that day,” said Mrs. Savory.
The 40-year-old added, “I think about it a lot when I look at my kids and Lee.
“When we got back from the hospital and the children finally slept, we both cried. We realize how incredibly happy we were.
“It confuses me that we didn’t have a carbon monoxide alarm at all. We hadn’t put a new boiler in long and it probably fell off the radar.
“Until it affects you personally, you’re just thinking,” It would never happen to me. “But it almost worked and I would just ask everyone to learn from it, buy an alarm or some, and make sure you do that annual security clearance for your devices. “
Mr Tonks, 40, said, “If Mo hadn’t knocked on our door this morning, we wouldn’t be here now, so we owe him everything.
“I was out the night before and thought I was having a bad hangover. I was sick and dizzy and as soon as I went outside I just collapsed.
“Stores soon won’t have to have carbon monoxide alarms anymore because my friends and family will all have bought them.
“At only £ 10 to save your family’s life, it’s worth every penny.”
For more information on carbon monoxide and safety information, see Visit www.cadentgas.com/co