Fire safety at home

Fire safety advice

A fire at home can be very serious for you and your family.

There are simple things you can do to make sure you are safe from the risks of fire.

Top tips

The top 10 fire safety tips from Essex County Fire and Rescue Service are:

  • make sure you have smoke alarms on every floor of your home
  • smoke alarms save lives but only if they are working, so make sure you test your smoke alarms every month
  • take extra care in the kitchen and never leave cooking unattended
  • take extra care when cooking with hot oil – it's safest to avoid using chip pans, or any pans filled with hot oil, altogether
  • don't overload electric sockets – most can only take a maximum of 13 amps
  • keep matches and lighters away from children
  • keep clothes well away from heaters and open fires
  • put out cigarettes properly and dispose of them carefully
  • don't charge devices like mobile phones, tablets or e-cigarettes overnight, or longer than the recommended charging time
  • plan an escape route and make sure everyone in the house knows how to get out if there's a fire

The risks

It's important to following fire safety advice because:

  • you're 4 times more likely to die in a fire if you don't have a smoke alarm that works
  • around half of all home fires are caused by cooking accidents
  • 2 fires every day are started by candles
  • every 6 days someone dies from a fire caused by a cigarette
  • about 2 fires a day are started by heaters
  • faulty electrics – appliances, wiring and overloaded sockets – cause around 6,000 fires in the home across the country every year

In the event of a fire, get out, stay out and call 999.

Council tenants and leaseholders

Tenants and leaseholders in council housing – including sheltered accommodation – can get the information on these web pages as a booklet, below.