Fire service asks the public to help spread the fire safety message

Avon Fire & Rescue Service is asking people to spare a thought for vulnerable friends and family, to help keep them keep safe from fire this winter.

During the colder months firefighters see an increase in the number of house fires they are called to caused by heating equipment that is faulty or used incorrectly. Last winter alone AF&RS was called to more than 30 house fires caused by heating equipment, many of which could have been avoided.

Station Manager Stuart Matthew, from AF&RS’s Community Team said: “In the run up to Christmas we’re asking people to think carefully about people they know who could use a little extra support to reduce the risk of having a fire in their home.

“Sometimes one bit of help or advice can lead to a small change in behaviour and can make a life saving difference.”

Every year Avon Fire & Rescue Service visits more than 10,000 homes of the most vulnerable people, providing them with practical help and advice on fire safety.

To encourage more people to take up the free service AF&RS is providing Christmas cards and vouchers, allowing the public to spread the message to friends and family who they think could use a little extra help this winter. Primary school children around the area are also being provided with vouchers and Christmas cards to colour-in for their families to pass on. 

Stuart said: “We’re asking the public to help get our message out to the most vulnerable people in our communities by using the cards and vouchers we’ve provided. We all know someone who is perhaps older or who has trouble getting about that would really benefit from some fire safety advice from AF&RS.

“If there is someone you love and care about, please make them aware of our free Home Fire Safe Visit service so we can help them to have a safe, warm and happy Christmas.”

For more information contact Avon Fire & Rescue Service on 0117 926 2061 and quote the code WSCA.

Tips to keep warm, keep safe:

  • Make sure furnishings are kept well away from all heaters, fires and candles.
  • Use a fire guard on open fires.
  • Have your chimney swept regularly to avoid a build up of soot, which could catch fire.
  • If you use an electric blanket which is more than three years old, make sure it is tested every year.
  • Unplug all electrical appliances which don’t need to be on continuously before going to bed at night.