12:51PM, Monday 19 December 2016
With the holiday season in full swing, the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service has urged people to celebrate safely.
Checking fire alarms, not overloading plug sockets, switching off fairy lights and not leaving candles unattended are some of the things people can do to remain safe.
On Saturday night, firefighters were called to a house fire in Moreton Way in Cippenham, which had been caused by fairy lights and overloaded plug sockets.
Iain Harrison, manager for prevention, said: “Christmas is a time when friends and family get together to enjoy the festivities. It is also a time where the risk of fire in the home increases due to the added distractions that come with these celebrations.
"Make sure you protect yourself and your loved ones by ensuring you have a working smoke alarm on every level of your home. Also be sure to check on elderly relatives or neighbours to make sure they have working smoke alarms.”
The tips include:
- Ensure you have working smoke alarms installed on all levels of your home. Test your smoke alarms every week 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. If you smoke, make sure your cigarette is fully extinguished and take care when under the influence of alcohol or tired.
- Don’t overload sockets. Ensure only one plug per socket. Always turn off plugs when they are not in use, except those that are designed to be left on, like freezers.
- Ensure you switch off fairy lights and unplug them before you go to bed, or leave the house
- 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.
- Drive for the conditions. In wet weather stopping distances will be at least double those required for stopping on dry roads.
- Regularly check the tread and pressure of your tyres, that all your lights work, and the condition of your windscreen and wipers.
- Keep your distance. Remember the two second rule and leave plenty of space between you and the vehicle in front.
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