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The importance of radiator covers in care homes has been highlighted multiple times by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Yet despite this, there are still reports of radiator burns occurring in care homes due to uncovered radiators.

We’ve highlighted some recent cases where a resident of a care home has suffered a burn from an uncovered radiator as well as the fine the care homes had to pay.

Manor House Residential Home – £24,600

A 79-year-old dementia sufferer was left with severe second-degree burns on her back after failing against an unprotected radiator in her bedroom in Manor House Residential Home.

Kathleen Waters needed a four-hour-operation and spent two months in a hospital recovering following the incident.

Bosses at the care home have since admitted that their staff were aware that Mrs Waters was a resident with a high risk of falls and who was also prone to seizures, yet they had failed to install radiator covers or have staff members monitoring her.

A CQC deputy chief inspector said: “This incident was entirely avoidable. The risk of people sustaining serious burns from uncovered radiators is something all care homes should be aware of”.

Manor House Residential Home was fined £24,600 following a prosecution by the Care Quality Commission.

Western Park View Care Home – £135,000

An 85-year-old man died after falling in his room and becoming trapped between an uncovered radiator and a wardrobe, causing him to suffer serious burns.

Walter Powley suffered first-degree burns on his left leg and died from his injuries eight days later in hospital.

An investigation by the HSE found the pipes and valves at the home were not covered and had a touch temperature of around 73 degrees.

A representative from the HSE said: “This was a foreseeable and preventable fatal incident, Western Park failed to heed published guidance from HSE about the need to cover hot pipes and valves. Had they been covered or boxed-in, Walter’s death could have been prevented.”

Western Park pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 (1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and were fined £135,000.

The Action Group – £8,000

A 49-year-old service user with cerebral palsy and severe learning disabilities was residing at an Action Group Residential Care Homes in Edinburgh and was left permanently scarred after she was burnt from an uncovered radiator while being assisted out of the shower.

As the service user was non-verbal and had a difficulty balancing, she was unable to move her leg away from the radiator or communicate with the support worker to alert her.

The support worker was aware that the radiator was hot, but did not consider it hot enough to burn.

A HSE inspector said: “It was foreseeable that an unprotected, hot radiator could pose a risk to vulnerable individuals with reduced mobility and to those who could not react appropriately or quickly enough to prevent injury”>

The Action Group pleaded guilty to breaching Section 3 of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act of 1974 and was fined £8,000.

The HSE states that under Health and Safety Legislation, radiator guards ARE required when people who have limited mobility are at risk of falling onto a hot surface which could cause harm.

It is important for the care home provider to assess the individual situation of each resident in your care home and make an executive decision to install radiator covers. The important things to consider are:

  • Lack of mobility. Will the resident be able to quickly move away from the hot surface in the case of a fall?
  • Sensitivity to temperature. Will the resident be able to recognise if they are touching a heated surface?
  • Mental capacity. Will the resident be able to recognise or react to a heated surface?
  • Furniture fittings or fixings. Are there any nearby objects such as wardrobes or drawers near the radiator/heater which will restrict movement away from the heat source?

Our Solution

The Radiator Guard from Cardea is designed to offer a simple solution for Care Homes to safeguard their radiators and eliminate the risk of burns. So what are the benefits of the Radiator Guard by Cardea?

HSE Compliant

Conforms to the Latest health and safety guidelines for managing risks from hot surfaces.

Heat Circulation

Unlike traditional radiators, the mesh-wire design allows the heat to flow freely to minimise heat loss.

Bespoke Design

Made to measure to provide you with the perfect fitting guard for your radiators.


Manufactured in durable 25mm steel wire mesh to ensure a long-lasting, resilient design which withstands normal handling procedures.

Ease of Use

A hook-on, hook-off design to allow for easy removal during routine maintenance and cleaning.


Specially coated to remain unaffected by heat, making them safe to touch.

If you would like to find out more information on Radiator Guards for your care home, talk to our team of specialists on 0161 869 6550 or send us an email.