By Lauren County, Compliance Manager
Keeping you safe in your home is a top priority for us. As well as providing you with smoke alarms, we also carry out annual gas and electrical safety checks.
There’s a lot you can do to ‘get fire smart’ and protect your family and your home from the danger of fire.
1. Do your monthly checks
Test your smoke alarm and any carbon monoxide detector at least once a month. If the alarm doesn’t sound when you press the button, replace the battery or if you have a mains-powered smoke alarm fitted, contact us immediately so we can arrange to fix it.
This is the most important thing you can do to protect yourself from fire or carbon monoxide poisoning. Be sure to replace the batteries each year, or when you hear the low battery warning sound.
You could also consider fitting extra battery-powered alarms in the centre of the ceiling, away from any lights.
2. Make an escape plan
When you're trying to escape, smoke can make it almost impossible to see – plan how you’d escape if a fire did break out, and practice it with your family.
The best exit is usually the nearest exit, but have a back-up plan in case that exit is blocked. You could also include any ground floor windows in your plan. Make sure everyone knows the escape plan.
Keep keys near doors and windows, so it’s quicker to get out. (For security reasons, don’t keep them within reach from outside). If there’s smoke, keep your body as low as possible, as the air will be clearer lower down.
Check doors before you open them – if they’re hot, there’s likely to be fire on the other side so use your plan B exit route. If you’re the last one out, close the door behind you to slow the progress of the fire.
3. Keep corridors and exits clear to help you escape
Keep corridors and exits clear. As well as fueling a fire, obstructions block your escape route and prevent the fire service getting in to put out the fire.
If you live somewhere with communal corridors or other areas, it's essential you don't leave items like bikes, buggies or mobility scooters in them.
For more information on fire safety, visit habinteg.org.uk/fire. If you’d like specific fire safety information about your house or flat, please contact Habinteg Direct on 0300 365 3100. Read more about Lauren and her role.