A fire can start in any room, but unless you have working smoke alarms to give you early warning of the fire, how would you escape?
This is the question Derbyshire Firefighters are asking in conjunction with the Fire Kills Campaign.
A fire really can start in any room, day, or night, so it’s essential every home has fire detection measures in place. Between October and December 2021 Firefighters attended 86 accidental house fires with the kitchen being the most likely place for these to occur. Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service responded to 39 cooking fires in this period, 23 fires due to faulty electrical items and white goods and 5 caused by smoking materials. A further 19 were caused by other means such as candles, fireworks, and heating equipment.
From the 21 February until 13 March, Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service will be supporting the Fire Kills national campaign to raise awareness of smoke alarms, the importance of testing them and where and when they should be fitted.
Speaking at the start of the campaign, Group Manager Lee Williams who leads on the Service’s Fire Prevention Strategy said: “Smoke alarms remain the most effective way of alerting occupants to a fire. Once alerted, occupants can get out of their property, stay out and call 999. If a home doesn’t have working smoke alarms fitted, or has them fitted in the wrong place, then the alarm isn’t raised, and the outcome can be devastating. People are twice as likely to die in a house fire where there are no smoke alarms fitted.”
- The minimum requirement is for a smoke alarm to be fitted on each floor of a home.
- It is strongly recommended for additional protection that smoke alarms are fitted within other rooms such as bedrooms, lounge, and dining rooms.
- The ideal position is on the ceiling, in the middle of a room, or in the hallway and landing, so they can be heard throughout the home.
- Alarms should not be put in or near kitchens or bathrooms where smoke or steam can set them off by accident.
- Alarms should be tested weekly to ensure they are working
- Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service can provide help for anyone who has difficulty fitting an alarm. To find out if someone is eligible for a Safe and Well visit www.derbys-fire.gov.uk/safety/at-home/safe-and-well-visits
Group Manager Williams went onto say: “During the campaign we will not only be raising awareness of smoke alarms and where they should be fitted, but we will also be targeting landlords and people living in rental accommodation, ensuring landlords know their obligations and that their tenants know they have a legal responsibility to keep them safe. We will also be targeting our older communities directly and asking people to ensure elderly relatives, neighbours and friends have smoke alarms fitted and know what to do in the event of a fire.”
For more information about keeping safe and smoke alarms visit www.derbys-fire.gov.uk