Don't let an electrical fire ruin your Christmas warns Hertfordshire County Council

PUBLISHED: 10:17 24 November 2016 | UPDATED: 10:42 24 November 2016

Hertfordshire County Council warns residents on how to avoid electrical fires. Stock image of a kitchen.

Hertfordshire County Council warns residents on how to avoid electrical fires. Stock image of a kitchen.

Jovy86

It's Electrical Fire Safety Week and Hertfordshire County Council is urging residents to take steps to reduce the risk of electrical fire in their homes, by providing life-saving tips.

Hertfordshire County Council’s cabinet member for community safety, Richard Thake, said: “Electrical fires account for almost half of all accidental house fires in the UK.

“By following some simple advice, residents in Hertfordshire can reduce the risk of fire in their home and ensure that they and their loved ones remain safe.”

White goods, such as fridges, freezers, dishwashers, cookers, washing machines and tumble dryers continue to be a source of fires. Follow these simple steps to reduce the risk in your home:

Remember good installation and maintenance is required. Read and follow the instruction manuals of white goods and make a note of any warnings. If you lose the instructions, then check the manufacturer’s website to see if you can download them.

Take note of strange noises and keep up with the house work. If your appliance starts to make strange noises or takes longer to work, stop using it and have it checked. Regular good housekeeping will also help, for example clean out the vent hose on a tumble dryer, clean the fatty grills on a cooker, and clean the dust vents on a fridge.

Don’t leave appliances unattended when in use. Unless the appliance is designed for continued use, such as a fridge. Don’t leave appliances running if your home is unoccupied or while you are sleeping.

Register your appliance. Fewer than half of us register our appliances. However, registering your appliances allows manufacturers to trace the appliance in a recall or to undertake safety repairs. AMDEA is an online safety initiative supported by the government. You can register several appliances, both new and ones up to 12 years old at www.registermyappliance.org.uk

Check whether your appliance has been recalled. You can check whether an appliance that you have, or intend to buy second hand, has been recalled and get further advice from the organisation Electrical Safety First. Visit www.electricitysafetyfirst.org.uk

Check up on elderly family and friends. Take the time to help any of your older friends and family that may need assistance with registering their appliances and checking for recalls.

Install safety devices – we recommend that all homes install and maintain safety devices such as smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and consider possible escape routes in the event of a fire in their home.

Hertfordshire County Council’s fire and rescue service also offers free home safety checks, for more information visit www.hertfordshire.gov.uk/firesafety

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