12/01/2015

Reduction In House Fires During 2014

2014 saw a reduction of the number of house fires and accidental fire deaths in Northern Ireland, according to the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS).

Figures show there was a total of 966 accidental dwelling fires in 2013 and that this was reduced by 43 to 923 in 2014. There were nine accidental fire deaths in 2013, while eight people lost their lives in accidental fires in 2014.

Dale Ashford, Assistant Chief Fire Officer, Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service said: "One accidental fire death is one too many and we want to reach a stage where we have no fatalities in Northern Ireland due to accidental houses fires. We remain steadfast in our commitment to achieving that.

"By routinely completing a number of simple fire safety steps, you can drastically reduce the risk of a fire in your home this year and beyond.

"Getting into the habit of checking your smoke alarms are working may just save your life. Every year Firefighters in Northern Ireland are called to fires in homes where smoke alarms are fitted, but are not working properly. Check they are working once a week by pressing the button. A working smoke alarm will provide you and your family with an early warning to fire in the house to give you the best possible chance to escape.

"Plan your escape route. Everyone should know what to do in a fire. If a fire occurs at night your escape will be hindered by dark or difficult conditions. If you have already planned an escape route and everyone knows what to do, escaping safely will be much easier.

"No-one is immune to the danger of fire and fire does not discriminate – it can happen to anyone of us. Fire deaths and injuries cause a lifetime of pain and suffering, and in 2015 we will be continuing with our work to help reduce such tragedies through our community engagement initiatives. However, we need the support of the public in helping us drive down the number of incidents our Firefighters attend by taking personal responsibility for their own fire safety in the home to STOP fire."

(IT/CD)

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