Whether you celebrate Christmas as a holiday or for religious reasons, Christmas is a time of joy, celebration and family. However, it does come with a greater risk to potential fire hazards. These potential fire hazards include candles, Christmas lights and electrical sockets. With this blog I hope to be able to share with you ways, in which you can reduce the risk of a fire happening in your home or workplace.
Although candles are used all year round, when lit around the Christmas period it can represent a host of different meanings. Whether that be remembering loved ones, a celebration of life, guidance for weary travellers or even religious reasons. Whatever your reasons are for lighting candles at Christmas time, don’t ruin it by being careless. To reduce the risk you need to make sure that they are placed somewhere that is out of reach from children, far away any decoration and never left unattended (if lit).
In regards to Christmas lights, in order to minimise the risk of fires. Christmas lights that have cables that are frayed or worn should never used. For ones that do work they should never placed near heaters and you need to sure that you turn lights off when going to bed or out of the house or office. Electrical sockets work on the same premise as Christmas lights, as a faulty socket can cause a short circuit which fries the socket and plug, which could result in a fire. The same could happen on a perfectly functional socket if it gets overloaded with plugs.
Decorations aren’t the only fire hazard at christmas time, as christmas dinners can be a fire hazard. What I mean is that this is a fire hazard as it can be a cause of a potential kitchen fire. Whether it happens in an office building, restaurant or even at home a kitchen fire can happen at any time. The main causes of a kitchen fire include leaving cooking food unattended, placing combustibles too close to a heat source and unintentionally turning equipment on or not turning it off. In order to reduce the risk, ensure that you are more vigilant of what you are cooking, have a cooking area that is clear and make sure you remember to turn it off after use or if you turn it on accidentially.
The Reality of Accidental Fires
In the UK, over the course of 2020/2021 statistics show that around 46% (11,078 fires) of all accidental house fires are caused by cooking appliances. With 12% (2,962 fires) of accidental fire caused by electrical distribution, 4% (1032 fires) of accidental fires caused by matches and candles and 2% (438 fires) of accidental fires caused by electrical lighting.
For 2022, it is feared that these numbers could rise because of the ongoing energy crisis, currently disseminating the UK’s economy. Resulting in people sourcing other ways in which to heat their homes, that could have hazardous implications. The alternatives people are starting to seek include candles, firewood and space heaters, in an effort to reduce the size of their bill. Especially if there is a shortfall of gas which means there is a possibility people could be hit with pre-planned, rolling three hour outages. With the intention of reducing power consumption by at least 5%.
If you are considering these measures to try and reduce your energy bill, whether it’s in your home or work. Don’t tamper with your smoke and fire alarms as they could be the difference in a life saved to a life lost. What I mean is that although you may be trying every measure to reduce your energy bill. The Smoke and Fire Alarms should never be taken down, have the batteries removed and should be tested to ensure 100% functionality. If it doesn’t work it should be your priority to change that. The moral of the story is, make sure to stay safe over the holidays and make sure you don’t put yourself, your colleagues, your friends or your family at unnecessary risk of getting hurt.
Thanks for Reading, Merry Cristmas