Fire advice

Fire advice

Prevention:

  • Ensure your home is fitted with smoke detectors from a reputable accredited brand. Test them weekly. Put them in hallways so you can hear them when you’re asleep. Don’t put them in kitchens or bathrooms.
  • Don’t let rubbish or other combustibles build up
  • 50% of fires are electrical – ensure your computers, fridges, tumble dryers and such like are properly ventilated and turned off when not in use
  • Don’t trail cables across walkways or under carpets – compression damages the insulation, which can result in a short-circuit, causing a fire
  • Never overload sockets, and avoid using extension cables wherever possible.
  • Ensure candles are always used in a dedicated candle-holder, on a firm, heatproof base. Keep them well away from flammables like curtains. Never leave them unattended.
  • Always have a spark-proof guard in front of open fire places.
  • Make sure heaters are securely positioned and cannot be knocked over.
  • Keep children out of the kitchen when cooking.
  • Stay in the kitchen if you’re cooking with fat, which catches fire easily. If the fat start to smoke, take it off the heat. Never pour water on smouldering or burning fat.
  • Check for hot plugs or plugs with dark marks, as well as wires that are loose or broken.
  • Don’t leave cigarettes alight – extinguish them thoroughly.

Mitigation:

  • Keep a fire blanket in the kitchen and know how to use it
  • Have an escape plan. Make sure everyone, including children, knows what to do if a fire breaks out
  • Practice the plan. Everyone should know where the keys are
  • Keep doorways and windows clear. Never store items such as bicycles or prams in hallways
  • Think about escape routes if stairways are blocked by smoke, flames, or fumes
  • If you have to drop from an upstairs window, throw a mattress out first. Then climb out and lower yourself to arm’s length from the window sill. When you drop, push yourself slightly away from the wall, rolling upon impact
  • Think about the escape needs of the young, elderly, and infirm
  • Keep a torch and phone by your bedside
  • In the event of a fire:
  • Phone 999 for the fire and rescue service
  • Be ready to tell them where you live
  • Do not attempt to put out the fire yourself
  • If your clothes are on fire: stop, drop, and roll. Rolling around will help extinguish the flames. Do not run about, it will make things worse.
  • If you can’t get out of the house, try and get everyone into one room as far from the fire as possible. Call 999 and tell them which room you’re in.

In the event of a fire:

  • Phone 999 for the fire and rescue service
  • Be ready to tell them where you live
  • Do not attempt to put out the fire yourself
  • If your clothes are on fire: stop, drop, and roll. Rolling around will help extinguish the flames. Do not run about, it will make things worse.
  • If you can’t get out of the house, try and get everyone into one room as far from the fire as possible. Call 999 and tell them which room you’re in.

What to do after a fire in your home:

  • Health: if you suffer from any respiratory problems and you have inhaled smoke or you feel unwell after a fire seek immediate medical assistance from your GP or go to your nearest Hospital A&E Department
  • Safety: The fire service will advise on the structural security of your home, and whether it is safe to enter
  • Please call us on 01223 200650 to report your claim. If a serious fire has occurred and it’s out of hours, please call your insurer’s emergency claims number. A list of numbers can be found here.
  • Your insurer will send a loss adjuster to your home to assess the damage.
  • Photograph what damage you can. Do not throw away any items until we or our loss adjuster tell you it is OK to do so.
  • Make a list of any damaged items that you need to throw away before you dispose of them. Take a note of make and model numbers, and take photographs of any damage if you have a camera to hand.
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Mike Taylor-West ACII

DIRECTOR, PRIVATE CLIENT AND MARINE

Direct Dial: +44 (0) 203 290 1774

Mobile: +44 (0) 7500 109737

Email: mike.taylorwest@laplayainsurance.com

Twitter: @MTWLaPlaya