With the onset of winter, Jacqui Kennedy, Acting Strategic Director of Place, urges council tenants to be careful with candles, avoid drying clothes in front of gas and electric heaters, use electric blankets safely and check their smoke alarms are working correctly.
During cold winter nights, candles can help give a warm festive glow, but they are also an increasing cause of fire – more than five a day – so remember to –
- Completely extinguish candles if leaving a room or going to sleep
- Keep candles out of the reach of children and pets
- Ensure both the candle holder and surface the candle holder is resting on are heat-resistant
- Trim wicks before burning and don’t burn candles all the way down
It’s tempting to dry washing in front of fires when they can’t dry outside in bad weather but drying clothes and washing over or in front of heaters can cause fires. Keep heaters away from curtains and furniture and never use them for drying clothes.
Electric blankets are a great way to keep warm and snug on a cold winter’s night but make sure you unplug them when you go to bed, unless they have thermostats and you can use them safely all night.
And lastly, two pieces of all year round advice –
- If you smoke, make sure cigarettes are fully extinguished and never smoke in bed – it’s still the main cause of fires in the home.
- Make sure you test your smoke alarms regularly to check they’re working – and remind yourself and all your family members what they sound like so you can act quickly if they go off.