With an alarming 4,000 domestic fires every year in the UK caused by faulty electrics, CDS is using Electrical Fire Safety Week to remind residents and landlords of the importance of ensuring their homes are safe.
The week, a joint initiative by the government’s Fire Kills campaign and national electrical safety charity, Electrical Safety First, runs from November 22 to 28.
It highlights the dangers posed by using faulty electrical appliances and overloading sockets.
Home office figures show that more than nine out of ten electrical fires are caused by electrical products and that more than half of all accidental house fires have an electrical cause at their root. It adds that people are eight times more likely to die in a fire if they don’t have a correctly positioned working smoke alarm.
A fire fighter from South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue offers some insight into which seemingly innocuous activities could have devastating consequences.
“Using counterfeit cables and leaving items charging overnight are key culprits,” she said.
“There are so many little things you can do to prevent fires happening. Some of the main advice really may seem like common sense. When drying your washing it is important not to place clothes directly over electric heaters.
“Take care to remove electricals from standby if not necessary. Unplug phone chargers and try not to charge things overnight. And most importantly, always use the correct charging cables that the manufacturer recommends, as ‘knock off’ chargers and other devices can be incredibly dangerous. Using too many plugs in one socket can also start a fire.”
CDS managing director Simon Abley added: “While Electrical Fire Safety week concentrates on giving residents personal responsibility for protecting themselves, it’s also vital, and a legal requirement, that residential landlords ensure they have an up-to-date fire risk assessment. It is their responsibility to ensure, where the fire risk assessment dictates, an appropriate level of fire detection is installed and maintained to British Standards.”
The fire risk assessment may also suggest additional protection measures such as sprinklers and remote 4G and 3G early warning monitoring systems – all of which can be specified, installed and maintained by CDS.
Electrical Safety First has created a number of online tools aimed at helping householders avoid devastating fires in their homes – such as a socket calculator, a product recall checker and a ‘Check It Out‘ plug-in, which enables buyers to identify whether products are being sold by third parties rather than legitimate suppliers.
CDS has been providing expert fire safety advice – from fire risk assessments, to specifying, monitoring and maintaining all aspects of a fire safety system – for more than 30 years to social housing providers, councils, police authorities, hospitals, care homes, universities, factories, warehouses and airports.