Make fire safety your top New Year priority

Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service (GFRS) is urging people to make fire safety a New Year priority by making sure they have enough smoke alarms in their home.

As part of the Fire Kills campaign, GFRS is advising residents to fit smoke alarms on every level of their home and to test them regularly.

Latest fire statistics reveal that one smoke alarm may not be enough to provide you with the best chance of escaping a fire in the home.

Despite the majority of homes (90 per cent) having at least one working smoke alarm, smoke alarms alerted householders to a fire in England in only 45 per cent of cases.  The most common reason it failed to activate was because the fire was outside its range.

GFRS is encouraging people to follow these smoke alarm tips:

  • Install at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home
  • Fit your smoke alarms in the right place – the ideal position is on the ceiling, in the middle of a room or on a hallway or landing
  • Consider fitting extra alarms in other rooms where there are electrical appliances and near sleeping areas
  • Don’t put alarms in or near kitchens and bathrooms, where smoke or steam can set them off by accident
  • Replace your smoke alarms every ten years
  • Do not ignore a neighbour’s beeping smoke alarm

GFRS is also advising carers and people who keep a close eye on less able relatives to check their homes have enough smoke alarms and are in the right places.

Mark Preece, Chief Fire Officer, said: “We must all make sure that we have enough smoke alarms to cover our whole homes. If you don’t have enough, or they’re not in the right place, you might not be alerted in time.

“The vast majority of us now have at least one smoke alarm in our home, but early detection and warning is vital to reduce the devastation a fire in the home can cause.”

Cllr Dave Norman, cabinet member with responsibility for the Fire and Rescue Service, said: “It’s vital to ensure you have enough smoke alarms and that they are in the right place to have the best chance of alerting you and your loved ones to a fire.

“You should make sure you have at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home, preferably in hallways and landings. It’s also important to remember that smoke alarms don’t last forever – so please remember to test them at least every month and replace them every ten years.”

For advice specific to you and your home, visit www.ohfsc.co.uk and complete your own home fire safety check. For further information, visit: fireengland.uk/fire-safety and or Smoke Alarm Advice – Glosfire (gloucestershire.gov.uk)

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