From April to September 2016, UK fire and rescue services attended around 87,000 fires, which resulted in 88 fatalities and 1,570 casualties, according to recent government figures. With many vulnerable people living under one roof, fire safety should be an absolute priority for your care home to reduce the risk of your residents and staff adding to these unfortunate numbers.
As we approach Christmas, it is important to bear in mind that the number of fires in the home increase. There are a number of reasons why this happens. Therefore it is important to take even greater care of your fire safety at Christmas than would normally be the case. This blog highlights the hazards around Christmas trees and decorations as well as the importance of your smoke detectors.
CHRISTMAS TREES & DECORATIONS
Christmas tree lights, however small, emit a level of heat and have been known to cause both natural and artificial Christmas trees to catch fire. So; remember to turn the lights off before retiring to bed at night. If you are going out to a party or event, it is probably a good idea to turn them off before going out.
It won't be too long now before its time to tackle the dreaded Christmas lights. Like the writer of this blog, you may well have ignored all reasoning last year and decided, yet again, to take the bundling together storage approach. It would have been so much easier in the long run to have stored them away carefully, in their original box, taking care not to bang the bulbs together. The bundling and stuffing approach is a sure fire way of you developing Christmas tree light problems again this year.
“Remember, Remember the 5th of November” – Bonfire Night Safety Advice
Bonfire Night, will soon be upon us and celebrated in the customary style of firework displays and lighting bonfires together with the burning of Guy Fawkes 'effigies. An age-old tradition is for children to display their guys made from old clothes and sacking and to ask "A penny for the guy".
To mark the 350th anniversary of the Great Fire of London in 1666, comparethemarket.com carried out a survey of 2,000 people living in Britain to find out if they would know what to do in the event of a fire. The research has revealed some surprising statistics:
• 54% of people living in Britain wouldn’t know what to do in the event of a fire
• Almost 20% of people living in Britain don’t have building or contents insurance policies
• 44% of younger millennials (18-24 year olds) also don’t have building or contents insurance policies
• 38% of Britons also admit that they wouldn’t know what to do in the event of fire, flood or storm
David Black, of DB Fire Safety Limited, is urging people with open fires to arrange for a clean sweep now that Autumn is upon us.
Chimney fires accounted for more than 5,000 chimney fires across England during 2014/15, Wood burners or an open fire are a very nice way to keep warm in the winter months but without proper maintenance they can become a fire hazard.
These fires could have been prevented and this is the reason why DB Fire Safety is anxious to urge people to get their chimneys swept by a registered sweep to prevent chimney damage or fire.
We tend to think that wildfires only occur in countries such as Spain, Canada and Australia. If you can take your mindback to April 2015, a grass fire a little bit closer to home in the South Wales Valley destroyed 222 acres of countryside. Only this year in March, there was a fire in Shetland which ripped through 70 acres of grass and heather. The Upton Heath fire in Dorset in 2011 damaged approximately 250 acres of the heath and required the mobilisation of 30 fire engines and 11 Land Rovers.
Home is where we feel safe, but it is also the place where we're most likely to die in a fire. For the older generation, the most recent government statistics are shocking.
In the 2014/15 government report, it was found that 41% of all fatalities from fires in England were 65 years old and over. This makes the elderly 10 times more likely to die in a fire than younger people.
Why are older people more at risk?
Way back in 1831, British scientist, Michael Faraday, discovered electromagnetic induction. This process is pretty much the same principle in respect of how we make use of electricity today. Electricity is a reliable form of energy that's essential in our modern and technology-filled lifestyles. It provides light, it cools our homes on hot summer days and heats them in winter. And, where would we be in our digital world if we were unable to charge our devices.
In today's blog, DB Fire Safety Ltd. would like to bring you up-to-date in respect of how the law affects residents who want to smoke in residential care homes. As may already know, it is an individual's right to continue to smoke when in care.
According to the law, residential care homes are exempt from the smoke-free legislation. Although it is not a legal requirement, designated indoor smoking rooms and/or bedrooms can be made available for use by those residents wishing to smoke indoors. It is, however, not a legal requirement to provide a bedroom.
If a residential care home designates such a smoking room, the following requirements must be met.
DB Fire Safety was interested to read recently in www.peterboroughtoday.co.uk that Peterborough City Hospital has still not complied with instructions from the region's fire service to make the hospital safe. According to Peterborough Today, the Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service has issued an Enforcement Notice on the Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust after becoming aware that defects at the hospital are four times worse than previously found.
The Enforcement Notice was issued on the 22nd March. There is remedial work to be carried out but, in the meantime, the fire service will work with the hospital managers to ensure that the risks are reduced as far as practicable.
Fire safety is important in any industry but it’s especially crucial in care homes, where a large number of people depend on your knowledge to keep them safe in an emergency. Here, industrial equipment retailer Slingsby discusses the fire safety risk assessment process and how to implement precautionary measures throughout any care home.
1. Identify the hazards
In a care home, they can be a number of potential hazards. A fire can start if oxygen, fuel and a source of ignition come together, so you should do all you can to prevent this from happening. While oxygen is ever-present, some potential hazards you may come across include:
The Fire Safety Order 2005 requires, amongst other things, that all businesses (including Residential Care and Nursing Homes) ensure that there is always an up-to-date fire risk assessment. It also requires that staff receive training in fire safety.
Staff at DB Fire Safety have over 25 years’ experience in providing fire safety support to businesses and organisations throughout England & Wales. We specialise in carrying out fire risk assessments and also provide training courses in general fire safety awareness and for senior staff as fire marshals. Although we prefer to train staff in their work location, we also offer specialist E-Learning courses.
DB Fire Safety has learnt this week that there have been five house fires across Lincolnshire recently. Fire crews have been called out to properties in Gainsborough, Grantham, Lincoln and Sleaford. It was reported that one of the fires was caused by a man cooking some lamb chops which he left unattended. Two more involved chip pans which had caught fire.
It was reported recently that a property landlord in Nottingham was fined over £3,000 because he was negligent in protecting his tenants from the risk of fire. The amount of the fine is sending out a strong message to landlords the importance of protecting their tenants from these risks.
You may be thinking that the law is only in place for people running a business and renting out several properties. You will be wrong in this assumption. The law also applies to private individuals looking to rent out their properties – all landlords have a duty of care to their tenants.