THE parents of a Wokingham woman who died from carbon monoxide poisoning have set up a petition calling for a change in the law.
Katie Haines died aged 31 in 2010, just one month after returning from her honeymoon in South America.
A former journalist, Katie lived at Barkham Road. Her parents, Avril and Gordon Samuel, have set up the online petition, with the aim of making carbon monoxide alarms mandatory in any house with a carbon-burning appliance.
Mr Samuel said: “My daughter had one [an alarm] but they hadn’t activated it, they went out and bought a smoke alarm and activated that, and it came with a carbon monoxide alarm, but they hadn’t got round to that. If they had, she would have known carbon monoxide was in the air and she would be alive.
“I really don’t want anybody to go through the grief that we went through. She died a month after coming back from her honeymoon. She’s buried in the same churchyard she was married in.
“Immediately after the accident, we just shut ourselves away, but in the few days that followed we thought this should never happen to anyone else, we must do something.” The Samuels, along with Katie’s husband Richard, set up the Katie Haines Memorial Trust – and the petition– as a legacy to her. Mr Samuel said: “The law should have been changed a long time ago. Poisoning is written off as flu or colds; it’s the silent killer, which makes it all the more dangerous.
“We want to raise awareness and give public information. The petition was the next stage, we wanted to do something constructive.
“My daughter didn’t know until it was too late. She didn’t know about it at all.” With a year to go on the petition, and already hitting more than 1,600 signatures, Mr Samuel said he was sure it would reach 100,000 – the number needed to trigger a public debate.
The Samuels launched the petition in partnership with the Plumb Center and Honeywell, both producers of domestic and consumer goods.
To sign the petition, visit www.no-to-co.co.uk