Understanding CO Risk in Vulnerable Households

CO Researc

What is the purpose of this research? This research is investigating carbon monoxide risk in households. Carbon monoxide (CO) is a highly poisonous gas which cannot be seen, smelt or tasted. It can be produced by faulty household appliances burning gas, wood, oil or coal, along with poor ventilation in the home. This research will explore with households their heating and cooking practices, along with CO awareness, to better understand exposure to CO in homes.

Who is carrying out this research? This research is led by National Energy Action (NEA), a registered national fuel poverty charity. It is funded by The Gas Safety Trust and Liverpool John Moores University is providing support to NEA on the project.

What does the research involve? In Year 1 of the research (winter 2015/16) NEA carried out in-home interviews and CO and temperature monitoring with over 70 households. In Year 2 of the research (winter 2016/17) we plan to further explore and test key findings from Year 1 through additional in-home interviews along with a postal questionnaire.

What types of households is the research targeting? In Year 2 we are targeting private tenants, including private rented sector tenants. We are seeking households who use one of gas, LPG, coal, oil or wood to help heat their home (i.e. not electric only).

Why have I been contacted? Past experience of undertaking research has shown that working with trusted third parties or those that already provide services to target groups can be one of the best ways to reach them – for example statutory services and local authorities, health sector services, housing services and services offered by community and voluntary groups.

What would my participation involve? We are requesting your support to help distribute the postal questionnaire to tenants or relevant forums. Examples of this could involve posting the questionnaire out to tenants for whom you have contact details (we can cover second class postage) or distributing and/or promoting the questionnaire at events, via services, etc. Alternatively, the questionnaire will be available online if there is an opportunity for you to disseminate the link electronically.

What would the household’s participation involve? The household will be asked to complete a short questionnaire that covers combustion appliances in their home, their heating, cooking and servicing behaviours, along with some demographic information. It should not take any longer than 10-15 minutes to complete.

How will my organisation benefit? Your participation will be acknowledged in the final report of the research and we may also be able to share anonymised and aggregated data from your clients, if this is of interest to you. More broadly, it is hoped this research will contribute to a body of evidence that will enable government and policy makers to better Page 2 of 2

support households stay safe from CO risk in their homes and also landlords to fulfil their obligations with regard to gas safety.

How will households benefit? Households who complete and return the postal questionnaire will be entered into a prize draw to win one of three high street shopping vouchers: £100 (First Prize), £50 (Second Prize), £25 (Third Prize).

Will I have to share any personal contact details of service users with NEA? No, you will not have to share any data as we will provide you with pre-packed questionnaires to distribute and for households to complete and return.

What are the project timelines? The research is taking place over two years: Year 1 (2015/16) is now complete and Year 2 (2016/17) is scheduled for completion at the end of March 2017. A report of the research will be launched in May/June 2017.

Any other questions or interested in helping?

Then please contact us, we’d love to hear from you:

Juliette Burroughs Senior Research and Policy Officer


0207 250 8319



Andy Stephenson

Policy Officer


0191 269 2912


CO Research Info Sheet for Tenants


Comments are closed.