Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service (NIFRS) are hoping that fire and road safety will be the star pupils as schools across Northern Ireland return from the summer holidays.
Following the long bank holiday weekend, there has been an increase in traffic on the roads as people return to work. As the summer comes to an end and the colder weather takes hold, families across Northern Ireland will be introducing additional fire hazards into the home such as portable heaters and lighting up home fires that have not been used for some time.
With this in mind, Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service (NIFRS) is encouraging everyone to protect themselves from fire and avail of a free Home Fire Safety Check to ensure their home is fire safe.
NIFRS Interim Assistant Chief Fire Officer Alan Walmsley said: “This time of year brings with it new fire hazards in the home and we want everyone to protect themselves and their families from fire by availing of our Free Home Fire Safety Check.
“Local Firefighters will visit and check your home to help make it fire safe. They will check for appliances that could cause fire, help with any actions to avoid fire and most importantly ensure that your smoke alarm is working. If necessary they will fit a free smoke alarm for you.
“This is an important call to action for all householders in Northern Ireland – you can phone for a free Home Fire Safety Check on 028 9260 0477, Text phone/Minicom 028 9262 8800 or go to our website www.nifrs.org for further information.
“I would also like to remind everyone that by routinely taking simple fire safety steps, you can help keep your family safe from fire. Ensure you have a working smoke alarm and test it once a week to make sure it is working. Never leave cooking unattended, unplug electrical appliances if you aren’t using them, don’t overload sockets and be careful when disposing of smoking materials.
“Make sure you have a night time fire safety routine and a fire escape plan so that all your family know what to do in a fire and how to escape safely. If a fire starts get out stay out and call 999.”
Tragically, 46 people have lost their lives due to road traffic collisions this year and NIFRS Assistant Chief Fire Officer Alan Walmsley has urged motorists to be road safe as the darker evenings set in.
“Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service would like to take this opportunity to reiterate the importance of being road safe when driving.
“Firefighters witness first-hand the carnage and devastation of road traffic collisions and we work closely with our partner agencies to improve road safety but everyone has a responsibility to behave safely on our roads.
“Make sure that headlights are working and tyres are of a legal tread depth. With the earlier evenings due to begin, make sure that you pay attention to the road, respect other road users and pedestrians and never, ever drink and drive.”