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Fire safety

Don't be distracted while in the kitchen! Did you know that over 50% of accidental dwelling fires start in the kitchen? This means that you are six times more likely to have an incident in your kitchen than in any other room in the house.

In Devon and Somerset over the last five years (2012 — 2017) within the home, 314 incidents that caused an injury resulted in a total of 387 injuries, 175 of these happened in the kitchen. This means a third of all accidental incidents within the kitchen are caused by distraction or falling asleep.

We all know that when cooking it's easy to be distracted, but our stats indicate that you are most likely to get distracted between 17:00 — 19:00. This is exactly the time when the evening meal is being prepared and becoming distracted can happen easily. The risk is heightened if you cook using a chip pan or deep fat fryer.

Home Alone

People over pensionable age and on their own are also more likely to become distracted during the process of cooking,
resulting in injuries. While people on their own but under pensionable age are most likely to have a cooking incident as a result of falling asleep after a night out.

Cooking safely

There are several things you can do to prevent fires when using a cooker:
make sure you don't get distracted when cooking, even for a short period of time, turn off the cooker
turn saucepans so the handles don't stick out over the edge of the hob or over another ring make sure tea-towels aren't hanging over the cooker and don't put oven gloves on top of a hot cooker
keep anything that can catch fire- potholders, oven mitts, wooden utensils, paper or plastic bags, food packaging, towels, or curtains- away from your cooker top
double check that the cooker is off when you have finished cooking

Have you checked your appliances lately?

Faulty electrics, appliances, wiring and overloaded sockets cause around 7,000 house fires across the country every
year. One of the main focuses is white goods which include cookers, dishwashers, tumble dryers, washing machines and fridges. Making small changes in your daily routine can reduce the risk of a fire starting in your home. This involves not leaving appliances running while the house is unoccupied or when everyone is asleep.

Be careful not to overload sockets as plugging too many electrical appliances into one socket can lead to overheating.

Have a look at the Socket Calculator using this link

Have you checked the appliances of an older or vulnerable person?

Checking the appliance or smoke alarm of someone who is older or vulnerable may identify any issues with their appliances ensuring they are protected from the risks of an incident occurring.

Smoke Alarms

Stay alive and stay safe with a working smoke alarm. This will greatly increase your chances of escaping from a fire unharmed. Without one you and your family are more than twice as likely to die in a fire at home.

Check that a smoke alarm is fitted on each level of your property:
once a year — change your battery or consider buying a ten-year alarm which will not require frequent battery changes

regularly check your alarms by pressing the button

once a year- vacuum and wipe the smoke alarm casing to ensure dust isn't blocking the sensor chamber (for mains wired alarms, switch off first).

In the event of a fire, get out, stay out and call 999.

Thought about making the call to request free Home Safety advice? Call free now on 0800 05 02 999. For any other fire safety advice, contact the Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue helpline on: 01392 872288 or visit our website