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Thirteen highlights electrical fire safety and warns customers, don’t take the risk
With over half of all accidental house fires caused by electricity and nine out of ten electrical fires caused by electrical products, we've pledged our support to Electrical Fire Safety Week (13 -19 November) and we're reminding customers to not take the risk.
13 Nov 2023
The annual safety week run by Electrical Safety First, will see the organisation raise awareness of the importance of electrical safety checks, why they must be carried out every five years and how to look out for dangerous electrical products, which could be a fire risk to themselves and those living around them.
Throughout the week we'll be highlighting a range of safety tips, including why we should always register electrical products, the dangers of overloading plug sockets, electric heaters and what to look out for when you’re buying electrical items.
Electrical services manager Richard Bruin said: “We use electricity every day, at home and at work. Accidental fires have devastating consequences.
“With Christmas around the corner, the coming months bring an increase in fire risks – with lights, decorations, and a whole range of electrical items. We know this is a challenging time and people are looking at ways to cut costs, but we don’t want to see anyone putting themselves, their families, and their neighbours at risk.
"There's a worry that as people continues to struggle with heating bills, they may resort to small heaters to plug the cost of heating gap.
"We want to do everything we can to keep our customers safe and remind them about the dangers of electricity. We know that many electrical fires are caused through misuse or faults and over half of these start in the kitchen; with microwaves, tumble dryers, washing machines and fridge freezers.
“Black Friday and Cyber Monday will see many of us looking for a bargain online, we’re asking everyone to always check that electrical appliances have a British or European safety mark when you buy them. Fake electrical products can easily overheat and catch fire.
“Our team of registered electricians work incredibly hard to keep customers safe. Every five years, we carry out an electrical safety check. We do this to make sure the electrical installation in their home is safe and meets the legal requirements. This safety check could identify any faults which, if not repaired, could cause a serious injury or a fire in the home. No one should take the risk.”
Any customers who have questions about electrical safety checks and have an outstanding appointment, should contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 0300 111 1000.
Tips to help keep you and your family safe
There are some simple steps everyone can take to stay safe.
- If you must use a portable electric heater, it needs to have someone keeping an eye on it at all times. Never let it get too close to anything which can burn and turn it off if you leave it.
- Do not use electrical devices which are damaged, have frayed cables, exposed wires or melted plastic.
- Most e-bikes and e-scooters are powered by lithium-ion batteries which can be charged in the home. It is important when charging e-bikes, e-scooters and mobility scooters that you do it safely to avoid the risk of a fire starting. Read more safety advice here.
- Do not try to feed a number of appliances through one socket, electricity will cause sockets and plugs to overheat.
- Do not overload a socket by plugging too many appliances into an extension lead. Overloading an extension lead could cause the plug in the wall socket to overheat and cause a fire.
- Do not plug one extension lead into another. Remember – only use one socket for one extension lead.
- Do not leave electrical items such as mobile phones on charge or laptops on a soft surface like a bed or sofa. This can block the cooling vents and increase the risk of the device overheating and catching fire.
- Do not use the top of the microwave for extra storage – those vents are there for cooling, and shouldn’t be obstructed.
- Always check that electrical appliances have a British or European safety mark when you buy them.
- Register your white goods – it could save your life if a product is recalled for safety reasons. You can check if an electrical product you own is under a recall notice at www.electricalsafetyfirst.org.uk/recall
- DIY activities can cause serious electric shocks in the home – like drilling or nailing into wires you didn’t know were there.
- Mains-powered portable electrical appliances like hair driers, heaters or radios should never be taken into the bathroom. Water and electricity don’t mix!
- You should never touch a person who’s suffered an electric shock if they’re still touching the source of the electricity, because you’ll get a shock too. Always turn the power off before helping them.
- Never take the slightest chance with electricity, it’s always best to call in a qualified electrician.
- Always keep your electrical safety check appointment and help us help you, by allowing us access into your home.