Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service is warning householders of the importance of carbon monoxide detectors after five people were overcome by fumes at a house near Devizes.

The fire service were called to the house in Littleton Panell on October 30 by Great Western Ambulance Service who treated the five people affected by the fumes.

Fire fighters from Devizes used an Altair monitor to establish that there were very high levels of carbon monoxide in the house, due to a faulty Rayburn.

In October 2010 a family from Potterne were taken to hospital with carbon monoxide poisoning due to a suspected blocked flue.

Carbon monoxide is often referred to as a silent killer as it is colourless, tasteless and has no smell.

Watch manager Neil Chamberlain said: “Carbon monoxide is colourless, odourless and tasteless, but it is also extremely dangerous. Without a CO detector you have no way of knowing that you’re being poisoned until the damage is already being done. Carbon monoxide kills some 15 people every year, so it is vital that every possible care is taken. CO detectors can be bought in most supermarkets and DIY stores. They’re not expensive and they save lives.”

Symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning include headaches or dizziness, breathless, nausea, loss of consciousness, tiredness, pains in the chest or stomach, erratic behaviour and visual problems.

For more, see www.carbonmonoxidesafety.org.uk