North Wales Fire Service urging residents to follow simple tips to stay safe over the festive season
With families busy making plans for the Christmas period, the Head of Community Safety for North Wales Fire and Rescue Service is urging residents to follow some simple tips to stay safe over the festive season.
Kevin Jones, Head of Community Safety, said: “We all like to enjoy ourselves over the holiday period – but it’s important for us all to keep our safety and the safety of our loved ones in mind while celebrating.
“The build up to Christmas and New Year can be a time to relax and enjoy being with family and friends – but extra vigilance is vital to prevent a fire that could easily devastate the family home with the loss of presents and valuables, seriously injuring or even worse killing you or a loved one.
“We’ve had two very lucky escapes following cooking fires in Pandy, near Llangollen and Bangor over recent weeks. Both these incidents involved residents in their eighties or nineties leaving cooking left unattended.
“There are more fires in the kitchen than in any other room in the home – and it only takes one small distraction for a fire to start. Please never leave cooking unattended and don’t drink or cook – and please help us get these messages through to any elderly or vulnerable family, friends or neighbours you may have.
“I want us all the work together to help keep our communities safe -let’s all think safe to stay safe.”
Kevin is urging people to stay safe and protect their homes from fire by following twelve tips for festive fire safety:
- Check your Christmas tree lights conform to the British Standard. Always use an RCD on outdoor electrical equipment (safety device that can save lives by instantly switching off the power).
- Never place candles near your Christmas tree, furniture or curtains. Don’t leave them burning unattended.
- Make sure your family and visitors staying for the festive period know what to do in an emergency. Practice a fire escape plan.
- Decorations can burn easily – Don’t attach them to lights or heaters.
- Switch off electrical appliances when not in use, unless they’re designed to stay on.
- Take special care with Christmas lights. Always switch off and unplug them before you go to bed. Christmas is a time when we use more electrical items – don’t overload sockets and plugs but use correctly fused multi gang safety leads. Please see the amp calculator on www.northwalesfire.gov.wales / keeping you safe / looking after the electrics or follow this link Looking after the electrics – At home – Keeping You Safe – North Wales Fire And Rescue Service (gov.wales)
- Most fires start in the kitchen – never leave cooking unattended. Celebrate Christmas and New Year safely. The risk of accidents, especially in the kitchen, is greater after alcohol is consumed.
- If you are planning to celebrate with fireworks, store them in a metal box, read the instructions, never go back to a lit firework and keep a bucket of water nearby.
- Make sure cigarettes are completely extinguished.
- Check the battery in your smoke alarm every week and use Christmas as a reminder to clean it and remove dust. You can get a free smoke alarm and register for a safe and well check by calling 0800 1691234.
- Keep candles, lighters and matches out of reach of children.
- Take the time to check on elderly relatives and neighbours this Christmas – make sure they are fire safe as well as checking on their well-being.
North Wales Fire and Rescue Service is running 12 days of Christmas safety competition starting next week, to be in with a chance of winning a chocolate hamper head over here: www.facebook.com/northwalesfire
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