Sheltered Housing
• Did you know you are four times more likely to die in a
fire if you don’t have a smoke alarm that works.
• Around half of all house fires are caused by cooking
accidents.
• Two fires a day are started by candles.
• Every six days someone dies from a fire caused by a
cigarette.
• About two fires a day are started by heaters.
• Faulty electrics (appliances, wiring and overloaded
sockets) cause around 6,000 fires in the home across the
country every year.
• Good housekeeping is essential for fire safety in
sheltered housing within communal areas and your own
flat.
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In the kitchen
• Take extra care if you leave the kitchen when cooking,
take pans off the heat or turn them down to avoid risk.
• Avoid cooking when you are under the influence of
alcohol.
• Avoid leaving children in the kitchen alone when
cooking on the hob. Keep matches and saucepan
handles out of their reach to keep them safe.
• Make sure saucepan handles don’t stick out- so that
they don’t get knocked off the stove.
• Take care if you’re wearing loose clothing-they easily
catch fire.
• Keep tea cloths away from the cooker and hob.
• Double check the cooker is switched off when you have
finished cooking.
2
Take care with electrics
• Keep electric (leads and appliances) away
from water.
• Check toasters are clean and placed away
from curtains and kitchen rolls.
• Keep the oven hob and grill clean and in good working
order. A build up of fat and grease can ignite a fire.
• Do not put anything metal in the microwave.
3
Deep fat frying
• Take care when cooking with hot oil- it sets alight easily.
• Make sure food is dry before putting it into hot oil so it
does not splash.
• If the oil starts to smoke- it’s too hot. Turn off the heat
and let it cool down.
• Use a thermostatic controlled electric deep fat fryer.
They can’t over heat.
What if the pan catches fire?
• Don’t take any risks. Turn off the heat if it’s safe to do
so. Never throw water at it.
• Don’t tackle the fire yourself get out, stay out and call
999.
4
Electrics
How to avoid electrical fires
• Always check that you use the right fuse to prevent over
heating.
• Make sure an electrical appliance has a British or
European safety mark when you buy it.
• Certain appliances such as washing machines, fridge and
freezer should have one per socket as they are high
powered.
• Try to keep to one plug per socket.
• When charging electrical goods, follow the
manufacturer’s instructions and look for the CE mark
that indicates chargers comply with European safety
standards.
5
Extension leads
An extension lead or adaptor will have a limit to how many
amps it can take, so be careful not to overload them to
reduce the risk of fire. Appliances use different amounts of
power- a television may use 3amp plug and a vacuum
cleaner a 5amp plug.
Keep electrical appliances clean in order to prevent them
triggering a fire.
• Keep your eyes peeled for signs of dangerous or loose
wiring such as scorch marks, hot plugs and sockets,
fuses that blow or circuit –breakers that trip for no
obvious reason, or flickering lights.
• Check and replace any old cables and leads, especially if
they are hidden from view- behind furniture under
carpets and mats.
• Unplugging appliances help to reduce the risk of fire.
• Unplug appliances when you’re not using them or going
to bed.
6
Furniture
• Always ensure your furniture has a fire-resistant
permanent label.
Portable heaters
• Try to secure heaters up against a wall to stop them
falling over.
• Keep them clear from curtains and furniture and never
use them to dry clothes.
Using an electric blanket
• Store electric blankets flat, rolled up or loosely folded to
prevent damaging the internal wiring.
• Unplug blankets before you get into bed, unless it has
thermostat control for safe all night use.
• Try not to but second hand blankets and check regularly
for wear and tear.
• Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
7
Cigarettes
Stub cigarettes out properly and dispose of them carefully.
Put them right out!
• Never smoke in bed.
• Use a proper ash tray- never a wastepaper bin.
• Make sure the ashtray cannot tip over and is made of a
material that will not burn.
• Don’t leave alit cigarette, cigar or pipe lying around.
They can easily fall over and start a fire.
• Take care if you smoke when you are tired, taking
prescription drugs or if you have been drinking. You
might fall asleep and set your bed or sofa on fire.
• Keep matches and lighters out of children’s reach.
• Consider buying child resistant lighters and matches.
8
Candles
Makes sure candles are secured in proper holders and away
from materials that may catch fire- like curtains.
• Put candles out when you leave the room, and make
sure they are put out completely at night.
• Children should not be left alone with candles.
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COMMUNAL AREA AND YOUR FIRE SAFETY RESPONSIBITITY
In Sheltered accommodation it is not only your flats which
need to be fire safe but also the communal areas inside
the building. As this is a shared area everyone has a
responsibility to keep it fire safe.
If fire breaks out in the communal area we need to make
sure there are not too many combustible items which may
add to the risk of smoke and fire.
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Please consider the following do’s and don’ts when
using the communal areas.
Do not over fill the book case; it is nice to keep a few books
for everyone to read but too many can be a fire hazard, Keep
it tidy to prevent fire spread.
Clothes are not to be left unattended in communal areas as
these will burn easily and cause lots of smoke.
11
Store all games, DVD’s, videos, and jigsaws inside the
cupboards provide, not on top of the cupboards.
Do not use decorative candles in the communal area. Candles
for birthday cakes can be used for celebrations.
12
Do not put too many flower pots in window sills, as it
prevents access to open windows.
We appreciate that this is your home and you want the
communal areas to look friendly and inviting but both The
Trust and residents have a duty of care to keep it safe.
Anything which is considered a fire risk will be immediately
removed.
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MOBILITY SCOOTERS
If you are considering buying a mobility scooter please ask
the Trust for permission to do so before your purchase one.
The Trust has limited space for storage so to prevent you
spending lots of money and having nowhere to store one
please ask first.
• Do not store mobility scooters in the communal areas.
Please use the scooter storage area if there is one or
keep it in your flat.
• Do not charge your scooter at night.
• Make sure you are using the correct cables and batteries
for your scooter as there are foreign replacements
which do not provide the correct fire safety protection.
• Look for the electrical safety sign on the scooter, leads
and battery.
14
IF THERE IS A FIRE IN YOUR FLAT
• If there is a fire in your flat keep calm and act quickly get
everyone out of your flat and make your way out of the
flat closing the door behind you.
• Don’t waste time investigating what has happened or
rescuing valuables.
• Make your way to a safe area, this may be the lounge or
outside of the building, if the fire alarm is not sounding
activate one of the call points or call 999.
• Do not go back to your flat unless you have been told it
is safe to return by the fire brigade of a member of the
Trust.
IF THERE IS A FIRE IN SOMEONE ELSE’S FLAT OR THE
COMMUNAL AREA
• If there is a fire in someone else’s flat or the communal
areas please stay inside your flat unless you are asked to
leave by the fire brigade or a member of the Trust.
• If you feel you are at risk of smoke or fire please leave
the building at the nearest exit.
• If there is smoke, keep low where the air is clearer.
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WHAT IF YOU NEED TO GET OUT AND YOUR EMERGENCY
ROUTE IS BLOCKED
• If you cannot get out, get everyone into one room,
ideally with a window and phone.
• Put bedding around the bottom of the door to block out
smoke.
• Call 999 and tell them where you are giving your flat
number name and address so that the brigade know you
need urgent assistance.
• Open the window and shout “Help Fire”.
• If you are on the ground floor and you can escape safely
you may be able to get through the window.
WHAT TO DO IF YOU’RE CLOTHES CATCH FIRE
• Don’t run around, you will make the flames worse.
• Lie down and roll around. It makes it harder for the fire
to spread.
• Smother the flames with a heavy material like a coat or
blanket.
• Remember stop, drop and roll.
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IF YOU DO NEED TO GET OUT DO YOU KNOW A SAFE EXIT
ROUTE OUT OF THE BUILDING ?
• Plan an escape route and make sure everyone in your
flat knows how to escape if necessary.
• Make sure your exits are always kept clear.
• The best route is the normal way in and out of your
home.
• Think of a second route in case the first one is blocked.
• Take a few minutes to practise your escape plan.
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MAKE A BEDTIME CHECK
You are more at risk of fire when asleep. So it’s a good idea
to check your home before going to bed.
 Close inside doors at night to stop fire from spreading.
 Turn off and unplug electrical appliances unless they are
designed to be left on – like your fridge/freezer.
 Check your cooker is turned off.
 Turn heaters off.
 Put candles and cigarettes out properly.
 Make sure your exits are clear.
If you have any questions or queries regarding Fire
Safety within your Sheltered Housing please contact Sharon
Holloway on 0800 012 1311.
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