There is nothing like a cosy open fire or the added warmth of an electric blanket, but these and other winter must-haves can bring an increased risk of fire into the home.
Check that all your winter essentials are fire-safe and remember a smoke alarm is the single most important piece of safety equipment in any home. Remember to test your smoke alarm on a regular basis as working smoke alarms save lives.
How are relatives and neighbours?
Take time to check on older relatives and neighbours, winter can be a tough time for some. Make sure that they are both warm and safe and have working smoke alarms installed. Ensure their smoke alarms are fitted in a place that will be audible from their bedrooms and consider making their smoke alarm more visible by putting a brightly coloured sticker on it to remind them to check it.
Have you swept your chimney?
The cold weather means many people will be lighting their chimneys. Ensure that they are dirt free to allow the free passage of dangerous combustion gasses; regular cleaning will remove soot and creosote, and help prevent dangerous chimney fires. Make sure your chimney is swept regularly by a registered chimney sweep.
Fires and heaters
Open fires can provide a relaxing and atmospheric way to keep warm, whereas portable heaters can be handily moved around but it’s important to use them safely:
Electric blankets can help you keep warm during the cold nights, but a fire can be devastating. Therefore, there are fire safety issues to consider:
Candles are growing in popularly and as with open fires, a naked flame brings risks if they are not treated carefully. Make sure that candles are secured in a proper holder, and away from materials that may catch fire like curtains. It is also very important that candles are put out completely when you leave the room or go to bed.
Wheat bags are heating pads that usually contain buckwheat or wheatgrass, which
can be warmed in a microwave.
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