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Big Freeze’ warning of fire death danger in the home

PUBLISHED: 18:00 06 January 2010 | UPDATED: 15:26 05 October 2010

FIRE chiefs have issued a public alert on safety in the home during the big freeze, with forecasters predicting the coldest winter for 100 years. The London Fire Brigade today urged householders to be cautious with electric heaters, candles, electric blankets and cookers

By Mike Brooke

FIRE chiefs have issued a public alert on safety in the home during the big freeze, with forecasters predicting the coldest winter for 100 years.

The London Fire Brigade today urged householders to be cautious with electric heaters, candles, electric blankets and cookers.

Community Safety assistant commissioner Andy Hickmott said: "The chance of a house catching fire increases when the temperature drops and it's freezing outside.

"Sadly, people are also more likely to die in a blaze during the winter months."

The brigade is urging households to install smoke alarms. Other tips include making sure all objects including curtains are kept clear of heaters. All electrical appliances should be in safe working order, with any frayed cords and broken plugs being replaced and kept them free from dust.

More accidental fires occur in the home in the winter months between November and January than any other time of the year. Half the people who die had no working smoke alarm in their homes, according to latest statistics.

More than a third of all fatal fires in the home are started by smoking materials. Next biggest danger is heating appliances, then cookers. Most fatal fires are likely to have started in the living room or the bedroom, research shows.


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