Christmastime is a period of festive joy and excitement, but just because the times are good it doesn’t mean that you can compromise on fire safety. In fact, at Christmastime you could find yourself more at risk of fire than at any other time. The reasons for this can vary, but here we’ll outline just a few of the fire safety risks at Christmas and how you can take steps to avoid fire outbreaks.
Test Your Fire Alarm
In a business, you should test your fire alarm fairly regularly dependent on the size of your premises. Some will need their fire alarms testing weekly, but you should also carry out fire drills every so often to make sure all of your staff know what to do in an emergency.
In the home, you should make sure that your smoke alarm has enough power and is functioning correctly. Press the test button in the centre of the smoke alarm to test it.
Don’t Overload Electrical Outlets
At Christmastime, we might find ourselves plugging multiple items into the same electrical socket, especially where decorations are concerned. On Christmas morning, charging up gifts could also see this happen. An overloaded plug socket risks an electrical fire starting, particularly if the plugs heat up tremendously. Spread your decorations out to avoid the worst.
Position Your Christmas Tree Safely
Whether it’s a fire, heater or radiator, your Christmas tree shouldn’t be anywhere near it. Christmas trees are excellent fuel for a fire; being large, they take up a significant proportion of your room, and will soon topple when on fire, spreading the flame further. Use a fire guard to ensure your fireplace doesn’t spit out embers that could ignite your tree, then place the tree well away from the fireplace too. Also, remember to turn off your tree’s fairy lights whenever you leave the room and keep candles away from it.
Appropriately Hang Your Decorations
One of the most exciting parts about Christmas is decorating. Tinsel, stockings and fairy lights soon pop up everywhere, but there are some places you should avoid putting them up. Namely, you should never hang decorations on or between lights in your home. Lights get hotter the longer they are on, and some decorations could subsequently ignite. Take care when decorating!
Never Leave Your Cooker Unattended
When cooking at any time, you should never leave the oven or hob unattended. Fires start – and thrive – when we least expect it and our backs are turned. At Christmas, many people will enjoy a drink while trying to get the Christmas dinner together, which makes it more likely that the cooker will be left unattended. Don’t make this mistake and keep an eye on your cooker at all times.
Ensure Your Fire Safety Equipment Is Serviced
Fire safety equipment is an indispensable part of any home or business, but if they haven’t been serviced in a while they could prove useless in the event of an actual fire. Before Christmas starts in earnest and guests or customers begin to pour in, be sure to have your equipment serviced to ensure it is in full working order.
At Protect & Detect, we offer a range of services to ensure your property or business meets all fire safety regulations, including a comprehensive installation and safety check on fire extinguishers and fire detection devices in a variety of business fields. For more information on our services, contact us today.