A fire can strike at any time. But it can be at its most devastating during the night as we may not wake up to act. That is why having a correctly functioning fire alarm is so important. Its function is to alert us to the presence of a fire.
What can I do?
- ensure you conduct regular test of the alarm and always keep a spare battery
- it is also vital to correctly site your fire alarm. Don’t place it too near the kitchen as cooking will set it off
- in London, more than a third of all fires occur in the kitchen. Never leave the kitchen unattended when you’re cooking
- chip pan fires are responsible for most of these fires. If you can, avoid cooking with large amounts of oil or fat; if not, never fill a pan more than one third of oil
- prior to cooking with a large amount of oil, prepare your own fire blanket. Wet a good sized tea towel and wring out the excess water. If the pan should catch fire, turn off the hob, and gently place the blanket over the pan to extinguish the flames. Never try to extinguish the flames by pouring water into the pan, this could cause a splash back and dowse you with burning hot oil
- don’t smoke if you feel you may fall asleep. Never smoke in bed and ensure ashtrays are never overfilled
- statistically, the majority of fires occur during the night at around 2am. Prior to going to bed, switch off all mains appliances except items such as fridges. Close doors to limit the spread of the fire and smoke
- ensure you have more than one route when evacuating your home. Recent additions to home safety include coiled fire ladders which attach to window ledges to enable you to escape from your upper stories.