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Electrical Fire Safety Week Highlights Risks In Residential And Work Settings

Sharpfibre

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The final week of September saw the Electrical Fire Safety Week take place, which ran from the 24th to the 30th.  The annual campaign, which is run by the Electrical Safety Council in conjunction with the government’s national Fire Kills initiative, aims to inform UK residents how they can reduce the chances of an electrical fire occurring in their home.  Considering figures reveal that almost half the residential fires in 2011/12 were caused by electrical items, it is certainly advice that is worth taking note of.  

Of course, our homes aren’t the only properties that are at risk from fires resulting from electrical problems and such incidents can also occur in work buildings, be they office, factory, educational or industrial settings.  Some of the electrical items found in work settings may vary to those in residential properties.  Yet others, such as fridges, TVs, kettles and computers are much the same.  With this in mind it is fair to say that much of the guidance provided to UK residents, with the aim of reducing the chances of electrical fire, can also be applied in the working environment.  

The tips below can be used in any setting to help aid electrical fire prevention:

Do not overload your plug sockets.  Preferably you should have only 1 plug in each socket

Where you have no option but to use a plug adaptor, be sure not to exceed the amp limit

Check that all plugs on electrical items have the right amperage fuse

Any electrical items that have internal fuses should also be checked to see if they have the correct amperage fuse.  Larger items, such as factory machinery, are more likely to have internal fuses

Check the cabling of all electrical appliances and machinery to ensure that it is not frayed or exposed, replacing any that is damaged

Clean the surfaces and the rear of electrical items to reduce dust build up and keep cooling vents clear.  The filters of any items that use them should also be cleaned out

Do not use the surfaces of electrical items to store objects on, such as manuals, tools or other equipment

Don’t overlook intermittent faults on electrical items as it could eventually cause a more serious issue, which may result in a fire

Installing a Residual Current Device (RCD) will protect from the chances of an electrical shock and also reduce the possibility of a fire occurring

Only purchase chargers for electrical items from reputable sources, so that you can be sure they meet with UK safety regulations

Finally, remember to unplug any appliances and machinery that are not in use and switch off the plug socket.  Not only will this reduce the likelihood of a fire, but also help to reduce your electricity bill

Sharpfibre are proud to provide services which help to reduce the chances of fires starting and spreading.  However, we recognise that a comprehensive approach to fire safety is the best policy and stress the importance of applying the guidance provided in this article, whether in a residential or work setting.

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