Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service (DWFRS) is supporting the National Fire Chiefs Council’s (NFCC) national Home Fire Safety Week, running from 13 – 19 June 2022.
Home Fire Safety Week aims to educate and spread awareness about fire safety in the home. The week of action is supported by fire and rescue services across the UK and covers a range of areas, such as electrical safety, the dangers of illegal cigarettes and the offer of Safe and Well checks and fire safety advice.
With the cost of living soaring across the UK, DWFRS is urging people not to take additional risks and be alert to how simple measures could save lives. The most recent statistics for England, which cover the 1 January –31 December 2021, show 181 people lost their lives in accidental dwelling fires, an increase of 18 per cent on the previous of year.
Safe & Well Manager, Vikki Thomas said: “As the cost of living increases across the entire UK, we are offering help and advice to ensure the safety of everyone in their homes. This ranges from simple steps such as smoke detection and visually checking electrical items, to how fire services can assist people who are more vulnerable.
“While we understand the pressures people are currently facing and affordability is a major factor for many, I am hoping that by giving practical help and advice, we can raise awareness and offer useful assistance. Prevention work is at the heart of all fire and rescue service work, and we are here to help.”
NFCC have created an online home fire safety check tool which enables people to explore whether they – along with loved ones or neighbours – could be at greater risk from fire: https://www.safelincs.co.uk/hfsc/
Check https://www.registermyappliance.org.uk/ to register your appliance and stay up to date on re-call information.
DWFRS is giving the following advice to help ensure residents are as safe as possible in their home:
- Switch off appliances at the plug where possible before you go to bed.
- Don’t leave appliances such as dishwashers and washing machines running overnight or when the house is empty.
- If you have a recalled appliance or an appliance subject to a repair order – don’t risk it – stop using it.
- Make sure it’s installed and maintained properly. This can be as simple as ensuring appliances aren’t sitting on power leads or not defrosting a freezer.
- Avoid inappropriate installation. Make sure appliances installed in outbuildings such as garages and sheds are appropriate for outdoor use.
- Don’t keep using appliances if they start to make unusual noises, smells or don’t operate properly. Have them checked by a professional.
- Make sure you have working smoke alarms fitted on every floor of your home and test them regularly
- Have a planned escape route and make sure you and your family practice it regularly.
For more information on maintaining fire safety in the home, visit https://www.dwfire.org.uk/safety-at-home/ or if you would like to organise a free Safe and Well visit, referral requests can be made here https://www.dwfire.org.uk/safe-and-well-referrals/.