While it will be a different Christmas this year, there will still be some of the usual hazards within our homes; Christmas dinner, wrapping presents, and decorations to name a few.
Jersey Fire and Rescue Service (JFRS) is supporting the national Fire Kills campaign, and urging Islanders to prioritise fire safety during the festivities.
Staying as safe as possible around fire is vital throughout the year, but with the extra distractions of Christmas, it is especially important to be vigilant. This is why JFRS is asking people to take extra care over the festive season to ensure that their families and loved ones are protected from fire.
Ian Gough, Crew Commander commented: “This year especially, we know that festive cheer will be important to Islanders so that we can all enjoy our varied celebrations, but we are urging everyone to do so as safely as possible. Christmas means there are inevitably more hazards than usual in the form of fairy lights, candles and decorations; this means there needs to be more care than usual, to ensure loved ones and belongings are kept safe and are not at risk.
“To ensure you have the merriest of Christmases, keep fire safety at the top of your list. Ensure you place candles in suitable holders and away from curtains, never leave cooking unattended and, of course, test your smoke alarms.”
Here are seven top Christmas safety tips from JFRS and the Fire Kills campaign include:
- Ensure you have working (ie tested) smoke alarms installed on all levels of your home. Working smoke alarms can give you the vital time needed to escape in a fire.
- Never leave cooking unattended. The majority of fires start in the kitchen so this is a high-risk area. Avoid cooking while under the influence of alcohol, and always turn off kitchen appliances when you have finished with them.
- Never leave burning candles unattended. Keep them away from children and anything flammable.
- Don’t overload sockets; 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 go out. Check that the lights conform to the British Standard (BS EN 60598) and are in good working order before use.
- Always use an RCD (residual current device) on outdoor electrical equipment. This safety device can save lives by instantly switching off the power if there is a fault and can be found in DIY stores.
- Make sure that everyone in your home knows what to do in a fire – get out, stay out and call 999.
Photo by Jacob Padilla.