A smoke alarm is a device that detects smoke at the earliest signs of fire and sounds a piercing alarm to alert you. A number of people are killed or seriously injured in fires that occur whilst they are asleep. The fitting of a smoke alarm could prevent many of these tragic instances.
Tips for use of smoke alarms:
- fit one on every floor of your house
- place within easy hearing distance
- don't fit alarms in kitchens or bathrooms as they can be easily triggered by steam or smoke from cooking.
Smoke alarms cost as little as £5 and are available in a wide range of shops. There are different types of alarm such as alarms that detect different types of fire and systems for the hard of hearing and deaf which consists of a vibrating pad and strobe light. The pad can be placed under a pillow and when the alarm sounds the pad and light will set off.
Your local Fire Service is happy to visit your home to conduct a free fire risk survey and fit smoke alarms into your home.
50% of all house fires start in the kitchen, below are some tips for cooking safely.
- never leave hot pans unattended, especially chip pans and only fill chip pans 1/3 full of oil
- keep the oven, toaster, grill and hob clean, fires can often be started by a build up of grease, fat and crumbs
- ensure saucepan handles don't stick out from the hob
- only tackle a pan fire if it's in its early stages and you're completely sure you can put it out and stay safe. If safe, turn off the heat
- wring out a damp cloth and cover the flaming pan. Never throw water over the pan
- do not place oven gloves, tea towels etc. near direct heat
- ensure burner is lit if using a gas cooker and ensure all controls are switched off after cooking.
- Fires caused by cigarettes kill more people than any other cause of fire
- Don't smoke in bed. It's too easy to fall asleep and set bedding on fire
- Always use proper ashtrays, and keep matches and lighters out of reach of children.
- Your best route in case of fire is the normal way in and out of your home, but have an alternate way planned in case of it being blocked
- Keep all escape routes clear and always include any children, disabled and the elderly and make sure everyone is present at time of escape
- Make sure everyone in the house is aware of where door and window keys are.
If the escape route is blocked it may be safer to stay in your home and protect yourself until the fire brigade arrives and effects a rescue.