Far too often, the SA Metropolitan Fire Service (MFS) responds to house fires where people are seriously injured or die in their own home. This doesn’t have to happen! Use this guide to make your home fire safe.
- Place a mesh guard in front of open fires
- Supervise children and pets when heaters or fires are in use
- Clean chimneys and flues regularly
- Keep anything that can burn – clothes, bedding, furniture and curtains – two metres away from heaters and open fires
There is no doubt that open fires can be dangerous, however, most of our wood heaters are safe enough to burn unattended and will add value to the appearance and practicality of your living areas.
- Keep a fire blanket and dry powder fire extinguisher in the kitchen and make sure you know how to use them correctly
- Never leave cooking unattended
- Be extra careful when cooking with oil
- Never throw water onto an oil or fat fire. Use a fire extinguisher, saucepan lid or a dry powder fire extinguisher to put the fire out
- Turn cooking utensil handles inward so that children can’t reach them
- Keep burning candles clear of all items which can catch fire (such as clothing, books, toys, paper and curtains)
- Use a proper candle holder with a wide, stable base
- Never leave children alone or asleep in a room with a burning candle
- Don’t use candles in places where they can be knocked over by pets
- Check that power cords are not frayed or damaged
- Never run cords under carpets or rugs
- Don’t place furniture on top of cords
- Don’t overload power points – use a powerboard with an overload switch
- Install an earth leakage circuit breaker
Smoke alarms give early warning of fire, allowing you and your family to escape safely. Every home MUST have a smoke alarm. We recommend replacing your old smoke alarm with a hard-wired smoke alarm.
Test smoke alarms once a month. You can do this by pressing the test button and the smoke alarm should sound.
Your smoke alarms might be sealed units powered by 10 year non-replaceable batteries, they might be powered by replaceable batteries or they might be hard-wired (240V) smoke alarms with replaceable back-up batteries. All replaceable batteries in smoke alarms should be replaced annually. When you change your clocks at the end of daylight saving, change your smoke alarm batteries.
Clean your smoke alarms at least every six months using your vacuum cleaner brush attachment.
Annual Smoke Alarm Service
Is all this a bit too much to remember? Glow can help! We offer an annual smoke alarm service during which our licensed and experienced technicians will:
- Inspect and clean all existing smoke alarms at the property
- Test sound output on all smoke alarms
- Check connections to ensure they meet Australian standards
- Service, clean and maintain smoke alarms as required by legislation (replace battery if required)
- Re-attend the property if a smoke alarm is beeping or appears faulty for no extra cost
- Replace smoke alarms if required with new smoke alarms
- Complete a test of your safety switches while on site
Home Fire Escape Plan
If you have a fire in your home you must know how to get out quickly and safely. All the people in your home should talk about how to get out. Plan how you will help the elderly and the children.
Make sure everyone knows:
- where possible, two ways to get out of every room in which people might sleep
- where to meet after they get out – at the letterbox might be ideal
- how to crawl low in smoke
- how to unlock doors and windows. Leave keys in deadlocked doors when someone is home and have quick release catches on security doors and grilles
- that once you get out, stay out. Use a mobile phone to call 000
- that someone should wait near the road to meet the Fire Service
Practise this Home Fire Escape Plan at least once a year with the people in your home.
First Aid for burns
Use cool running water to cool burns and lessen the pain. Do this for 20 minutes. Don’t use oils, butter, ice or ointments.
Visit the SA Metropolitan Fire Service website for more information and call Glow today for your annual smoke alarm service!
Source: SA Metropolitan Fire Service