Don’t Let Fire Ruin Festive Cheer this Christmas

Christmas dinner, wrapping presents, decorating your home – there’s lots to think about this Christmas, but one thing Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service (WFRS) is reminding residents to put top of their Christmas lists this year is fire safety.

While fire safety is vital throughout the year, the extra distractions of Christmas make it especially important to be vigilant during the festive season and WFRS is asking people to take extra care over the festive season to ensure that their families and loved ones are protected from fire.

Community Fire Prevention and Arson Manager, Moreno Francioso said: “Christmas is a time for festive cheer with family and friends but fairy lights, candles and decorations mean it is also a time to take extra care to stay fire safe”

“The colder weather brings its own menaces too. Take care when using portable heaters or open fires to keep warm while also ensuring you place candles in suitable holders and away from curtains, never leave cooking unattended and, of course, test your smoke alarms.

“We’ll be sharing lots of tips on our social media pages throughout December to help keep you and your loved ones safe from fire, keep watching our pages for further information.”

Warwickshire County Councillor Andy Crump, Portfolio Holder for Community Safety said: “We wish all our residents a merry and safe Christmas. While this is a time for celebrating we also want to take this opportunity to remind everyone to stay fire safe and follow our safety tips.

“Our main priority is the safety of our residents and as part of our commitment to protect the community we offer free Safe and Well visits and advice to help keep our communities fire safe. If you know anyone who would benefit from a Safe and Well visit, don’t hesitate and get in touch today to arrange a visit at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/safeandwellvisit”  

Below are some simple tips to help you and your family enjoy Christmas safely:

  • Ensure you have working smoke alarms installed on all levels of your home.
  • Test your smoke alarms regularly and never remove batteries!
  • Never leave cooking unattended.
  • Many of us enjoy a merry tipple over the festive season but be sure to avoid cooking whilst under the influence of alcohol.
  • Always turn off kitchen appliances when you have finished cooking.
  • Never leave burning candles unattended.
  • Keep candles out of the reach of children, and away from decorations, cards and wrapping paper, fires, lights and heaters.
  • Put your cigarette out, right out.
  • Make sure your cigarette is fully extinguished and take care when under the influence of alcohol or tired.
  • Never use heaters to dry clothes. Heaters can start fires when things are placed too close to them. Keep them well away from curtains, clothing and furniture.
  • Don’t overload sockets. Ensure only one plug per socket.
  • Ensure you switch off fairy lights and unplug them before you go to bed or leave the house. Check your Christmas tree lights conform to the British Standard (BS EN 60598) and are in good working order before use.
  • Always use an RCD (residual current device) on outdoor electrical equipment.
  • Make sure that everyone in your home knows what to do in a fire – in the event of fire you should get out, stay out and call 999

For more information, visit http://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/celebratesafely