With the colder weather on its way, Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service (WFRS) are encouraging people to look out for elderly or vulnerable relatives and neighbours as part of a drive to reduce fire deaths in the county.
With the colder weather comes the increased use of gas and electric heaters, electric blankets and open fires, all of which come with an increased fire risk, especially when residents are elderly or vulnerable and have mobility issues.
In a bid to reduce fire deaths and injuries in the county, WFRS are urging carers, support workers, families, friends and neighbours of elderly or vulnerable residents to give us a call and apply for a Free Safe and Well visit, so that we can help keep residents safer.
Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Services Community Fire Safety Manager, Moreno Francioso said: “The new Safe and Well visits have been in place for four months now and have already had an impact on the most vulnerable members of our community. The checks are much more comprehensive and include not just assessing fire safety risks, but also slips, trips and falls, winter warmth and home security.
“Our aim has always been to reduce needless fire deaths, which is why we are urging families, friends, neighbours, care workers, dementia friends and health workers to be aware of the dangers faced by elderly and vulnerable residents and to alert the fire service, so we can carry out a free Safe and Well visit.
“Sadly, sometimes, the first time we know about someone at risk is when it is too late. The frustrating part of that for us is that these types of incidents are completely preventable.”
Supporting the new Safe and Well visits, Warwickshire County Councillor, Howard Roberts, Portfolio Holder for Community Safety said:
“We know from our data that elderly residents and people with limited mobility are more at risk of having a fire in their home and this is something that we are trying to tackle head on with our Safe and Well visits.
“Simple steps such as fitting working smoke alarms in the home or purchasing fire retardant throws can make all the difference to someone who is at higher risk. Equally ensuring that residents don’t overload plug sockets or leave cooking unattended can help residents to stay fire safe.
“The key message here is that Safe and Well visits really do save lives. So if you know someone who may be at risk or have contact with someone vulnerable, then please ensure that you refer them on for a free Safe and Well visit. It could save their life!”
To book a free Safe and Well visit, log onto https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/safeandwellvisit or call 01926 466282.