Thankfully, there are relatively few fires, but when they do occur it is vital that you know what to do.
If you live in a house, you should get out of the property as soon as you can by the safest means possible and should not return until the fire service says you can.
If you live in a flat, follow the safety instructions on the notices displayed around your building. Your building will have either a “Delayed Evacuation” strategy sometimes known as stayput or an “evacuation” strategy depending on its design and/or any specific arrangement that may temporarily be put in place.
It is important to remember that, regardless of the strategy for your building, if at any time you are affected by smoke or fire, feel it is unsafe to stay in your property (even if the fire is somewhere else in the building), or you are instructed to leave by the Fire and Rescue Service, you should leave the building by the nearest exit, closing any doors behind you.
If you are in a communal area and discover a fire, you should leave the building immediately – do not return to your flat. If your building has an alarm point in the communal area, you should activate this as you leave to alert others in the building to the fire.
Call 999 as soon as it is safe to do so – the sooner you call the fire service, the sooner they will arrive to help.
Do not tackle a fire yourself unless you have received training in how to do this – you could be putting yourself and others in more danger.
Try to stay calm and, if you can, close all doors and windows to prevent smoke and fire spreading.
You should not use a lift in the event of a fire in case you become trapped. You should always use the emergency exit staircases and designated fire escape routes.
Once you have left your property, you should not return until the fire service says you can.