November 23, 2016, by Kirsty McKeown
Hello from Notts Fire and Rescue Service
Today we have a guest blog from Guninder Nagi, a Risk Reduction Officer working in Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service’s Community Safety Team:
Stay safe and enjoy life! Are you at risk from fire?
Partying, smoking and drinking may all be part of the student lifestyle for some, but could be putting you at higher risk of fire. In the United Kingdom over the past five years, cigarettes, smoking materials and candles have been the cause of 1,500 injuries to 18 to 24 year olds.
More than half of all accidental dwelling fire deaths amongst this age group occur in the kitchen when cooking, when handling hot substances or through misuse of electrical equipment.
Top ten fire safety tips:
- Fit smoke alarms on each level of the property and test them weekly.
- Never leave cooking unattended.
- Never attempt to cook while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Don’t overload plug sockets.
- Switch off electrical appliances, like phone chargers and hair straighteners, when not in use.
- Take extra care with cigarettes and smoking materials.
- Never leave candles unattended.
- Check furniture has the permanent fire-resistant label.
- Practice an escape route.
- If a fire starts, get out, stay out and dial 999.
Smoke alarms save lives
Having a working smoke alarm really can be the difference between life and death. Fit one on every level of your property and check them weekly. Never remove the batteries to use elsewhere, and make sure you always have spares.
On average, 17 people are killed or injured in kitchen fires every day. Never leave cooking unattended and never attempt to cook while under the influence of alcohol. Use a deep fat fryer, which is thermostatically controlled and can’t overheat, instead of a chip pan.
Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service (LFRS) have found that students throughout the country have been provided with a door wedge by a company called ‘Total Students’ as a free promotional item during Freshers week. Total Students have provided these door wedges to enable students to wedge open the doors to their rooms in order to encourage them to make new friends.
LFRS have contacted Total Students and made them aware of the implications of them encouraging students to wedge open doors that are likely to be fire doors. As a result they have now stopped issuing the wedges to students.
The distribution of these wedges by Total Students has apparently been going on for a number of years and there are likely to be a significant number of these wedges in student accommodation throughout the United Kingdom.
It is soon the end of the year and this is when we get a lot of incidents when students are partying late at night and at times can cause disruption and noise pollution to their neighbours.
Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service attends thousands of emergency calls each year and provides a life-saving response to people in traumatic and dangerous situations. Deliberate false alarms prevent Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service from responding to genuine emergencies and take up valuable time and resources. These types of incidents put lives at risk and are serious offences that can also have tragic consequences.
Fire extinguishers and fire safety equipment are provided for the protection of the public, students and staff. Malicious activation of fire extinguishers or tampering with fire safety equipment is a criminal offence.
Please visit our website for more advice on keeping yourself and your friends safe from fire: www.notts-fire.gov.uk