Whether you are home working, self-isolating or social distancing, we know you’ll probably be spending more time at home over the next few weeks. This could increase the chances of you having a fire in your home.
Fortunately, by taking four easy steps, you can seriously reduce the risk to you and your loved ones:
1.Don’t leave cooking unattended – and ditch the chip pan immediately
Distraction is the leading cause of house fire nationally. In fact, most of the cooking fires we attend are down to somebody starting cooking, forgetting about it and leaving it to burn. The rest usually involve chip pans – please use oven chips instead.
2.Make sure you’re not leaving clothes, tea-towels and other items near heaters, hobs and other heat sources
Another leading cause of house fire is people leaving things like clothes and tea-towels on hobs and portable heaters. Items like these can easily set on fire so it’s vital you keep them away from naked flames and other heat sources.
3.Check electrical appliances, don’t overload sockets and NEVER use faulty items or white goods
Extension leads can only handle so much power – plug too many things in and the chances are they will blow. Faulty goods can also be a big issue, too. If your washing machine or tumble dryer starts playing up – stop using it and get it checked immediately.
4.Make sure you have working smoke alarms and test them regularly
Smoke alarms save lives, but only if you have them and they are working. They can give you an early warning of a fire – early enough for you to get out safely. Buy them. Fit them. Test them.
During what are very challenging times for us all we’d ask that, as well as taking on board this advice yourself, you pass the messages on to your friends, neighbours and relatives – especially those over 70-years-old.
Be assured, too, that accidental house fires are very rare and our firefighters stand ready to respond to 999 calls, across South Yorkshire, as and when needed.
Local Updates – Doncaster Community Hub
We’re pleased to be supporting the Doncaster Community Hub. This has just been opened to support the most vulnerable during these extremely challenging times. It has been established by a range of organisations and will be based at the Doncaster Culture & Leisure Trust. The hub will provide:
· Helpline available 7 days a week from 8.00am to 8.00pm – Telephone: 01302 430300 – anyone can ring this if they are or know of someone who is vulnerable and has no other support
· Practical support such as urgent food supplies, shopping, hot food, collection of medication etc will be a priority
· Online chat, signposting and connecting people to other groups and volunteers to provide advice on exercising at home, keeping connected or just for regular contact
· A proactive team who will be calling vulnerable people to see how they are and find out if they need any support
· Helping to co-ordinate volunteers – collecting information about what voluntary and community sector can offer and supporting and co-ordinating voluntary effort
· There is also an email address: firstname.lastname@example.org and a web site: www.dncommunityhub.org.uk
Anyone self-isolating in Doncaster is urged to fill out a form online – www.doncaster.gov.uk/self-isolation-form – or call 01302 736000.
Local Updates – Rotherham Heroes
Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council has set up a volunteer scheme – Rotherham Heroes – to support the district’s most vulnerable.
If you, or someone you know, is living alone, vulnerable and in need of help, the heroes are on hand. They can help with:
- Essential shopping and dropping off food parcels
- Being a friendly voice on the other end of the phone
- Picking up prescriptions from the chemist
- Taking your dog out for a walk once a day
To access the support – which should only be used by those who really need it – call 01709 807319 between 9am and 5pm. Alternatively you can complete a form on their website – www.rotherham.gov.uk/volunteer.