Electrical Fire Safety Week 23rd – 29th January 2012 

Firefighters in South Wales Fire and Rescue Service are urging people to be aware of the dangers of overloaded sockets and overheated appliances.

As Electrical Fire Safety Week (January 23 - 29) gets underway, Firefighters along with their partners in the Electrical Safety Council want to raise awareness of one of the biggest causes of accidental house fires in the country.

Electrical appliances have become a staple of modern life - from fridges and phones to toasters or the TV; it's hard to think of how we'd get by without a few electrically-powered essentials. And with the recent cold weather, many sockets could still be loaded with heaters and electric blankets.

However, last year, 163 of South Wales 853 house fires were caused by electrical faults, accidents or misuse of electrical equipment.

Acting Chief Fire Officer, Huw Jakeway, South Wales Fire and Rescue Service said “Electricity is often overlooked as a fire hazard, perhaps because there is no flame but just because there is no flame, doesn’t mean there’s no risk - Never underestimate the risk of fire from electricity.”

Chairman, South Wales Fire and Rescue Service, Cllr Anthony Ernest said “In conjunction with our partners we are extremely pleased to be supporting Electrical Fire Safety Week and help promote electrical safety tips and dangers”.

Top Electrical Safety Tips and Dangers

● Keep electrical appliances clean and in good working order and have them serviced regularly
● Never buy an electrical appliance without knowing it is safe to use
● New appliances should have the British or European safety mark on it
● Do not leave electrical appliances on standby, unless they are designed to be left switched on (fridges and freezers for example). All other appliances should be turned off at the plug, and ideally unplugged, before going out or going to bed
● Get your electrical system checked by a competent, registered electrician at least once every 10 years
● Always make sure you uses an RCD with electrical garden tools to protect
from an electric shock or even electrocution

Check electrical leads and plugs for wear and tear and faulty wiring. Frayed leads or exposed internal wires are fire risks.

If you notice hot plugs and sockets, fuses that blow for no reason, flickering lights, and scorch marks on sockets or plugs ask a qualified electrician to check your wiring.

Don’t overload sockets
Don’t overload sockets – use one plug in each socket.
- Use a ‘bar-type’ fused adaptor on a lead, rather than a ‘block-type’ adaptor.
- Don’t allow the total amps of all plugs in the adaptor to add up to more than
13 amps (or 3000 watts of power).
- Don’t plug adaptors into adaptors - use one adaptor in each socket.

Working smoke alarms save lives
For the protection of you and your family, make sure you have at least one smoke alarm on each floor of your home and that it is tested regularly

In the event of any fire, NEVER attempt to deal with it yourself. Instead, get out, stay out and dial 999.

              Contact Details

01443 232000
Fax: 01443 232165

email: press_office@southwales-fire.gov.uk

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Page Last Updated on 24/1/2012