Research indicates that there are around 37,000 house fires and 200 fire-related deaths in the UK every year. This is an alarming statistic, especially when you consider that the majority of these house fires occur within the home between 10am and 6pm when people are asleep.
It is therefore imperative that you have the appropriate fire safety equipment stored within your home. Ensuring that your family and all your possessions are safe and kept well protected should be of paramount importance.
In this guide we’ve listed some of the essential home fire safety equipment we recommend you keep in your home. Hopefully you’ll never need to use it, but at least you’ll be prepared should the worst happen.
Smoke alarms are must-haves when it comes to home fire safety. They give you advance warning of fire – instantly alerting you upon detection – thus giving you more time to react and evacuate the house to a safe location.
For maximum protection it’s advised that you have smoke alarms on all levels of your home and install them just outside the bedrooms. This ensures that the alarm sounds before smoke reaches anyone who is asleep.
Smoke alarms have proven to lower both casualty rates and damage to homes. However, in order for them to have the impact desired, they need to be in working order. The batteries of each alarm need to be replaced once a year, the alarms should be kept free of dust at all times (cleaning will be required) and you should test each alarm on a monthly basis by pressing the test button and listening for the beep. Unless individual alarm testing suggests earlier replacement, your smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years.
Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Carbon monoxide detectors do exactly as their name suggests; detect carbon monoxide.
Often referred to as the “silent killer” due to the fact it can neither be seen, smelled nor tasted, carbon monoxide (CO) is a toxic gas that is nearly impossible to detect without a specialist detector.
Carbon monoxide is produced when fuels like gas, oil, coal and wood do not burn fully. Boilers, central heating systems and cookers are just a few possible sources of CO gas in the home.
Figures from the Department of Health indicate that carbon monoxide poisoning results in recorded cases of around 40 deaths and 200 hospitalisations each year in England and Wales. Symptoms of poisoning can include headaches, nausea and dizziness, but can progress to loss of consciousness and sometimes death.
Carbon monoxide detectors monitor the level of CO in your home, alerting you before it reaches a threatening level. Without a detector, CO can build up in your home without knowing.
Fire blankets are highly flame-resistant blankets that can be used to either extinguish a small fire or to wrap around a person whose clothes have become alight. They are generally used as a countermeasure for small fires; typically, stovetop fires in the kitchen.
Every home should have one as they help to prevent a small fire from getting out of control, enabling you to smother a fire in its beginning stages.
Everyone in your home should know where the fire blanket is stored and know how to remove the blanket from its packaging.
A domestic fire extinguisher is another important piece of fire safety equipment to add to your list. They help to save lives and reduce property damage by putting out a small fire or at least suppressing it until the fire rescue services arrive.
Different types of fire extinguishers are available, each of which are suited to different types of fires. Your fire extinguisher should only be used if you know it is suitable for the type of fire you’re putting out, you can extinguish the fire quickly, everyone else in your home has left the area and you’re not putting your life at risk by staying near the fire.
Fire Resistant Safe
Available in almost all sizes and usually at affordable prices, a fire resistant safe or lock box is something worth having in your home. They ensure any important documents and irreplaceable items, such as birth certificates, family photos and sentimental jewellery, are not only protected from thieves, but also fire.
Fire Escape Ladders
Last, but by no means least, on our home fire safety equipment kit list is a fire escape ladder. These are designed to help you evacuate from your home in the case of an emergency if your primary escape route is blocked. They come in two and three-storey models and easily deploy from a standard windowsill.
They should ideally be stored in each bedroom on the upper level(s) of your home so that they can be quickly and easily accessed in the event of an emergency.
Fire Alarm Protection Bristol
Here at Sovereign Fire & Security, we are an established fire alarm specialist with ISO 9001 accreditation providing the highest-quality fire, life safety and security systems. If you’d like to find out more about reliably protecting your home from fire, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with a member of our team today. We’ll be more than happy to provide you with our bespoke recommendations based on your specific requirements.
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