Fire crews issue advice on how to safely heat your home this winter
As temperatures drop across the region, fire crews are urging us to heat our homes safely.
Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service has issued advice as households continue to deal with rising energy costs. They're also encouraging us to check on vulnerable neighbours who may be struggling in the cold weather.
The service says there has been a rise in people trying to find cheaper, alternative ways of heating their homes such as lighting fire places, using wood burners, hot water bottles, electric heaters and electric blankets.
In light of this, crews have issued fire safety advice, urging people to use them sensibly and carefully.
Safety advice include;
Make sure there is one metre between electric heaters and clothing, furniture or other flammable materials
Do not use electric blankets that are damaged, or have been rolled up in a cupboard for a number of years
Do not use hot water bottles alongside electric blankets
Make sure electric blankets and heaters are not left switched on overnight
Ensure sockets are not overloaded
Make sure chimneys have been swept before they are used for the first time over winter
Make sure smoke alarms are fitted, regularly tested and working
Group Manager Steve Thomas, Head of TWFRS’s Prevention and Education Department, said the Service will always be on hand to offer support.
He said: “This is a difficult time of year for many residents across Tyne and Wear even without the added pressures of rising energy prices.
"We have already seen examples of people trying to heat their homes in alternative ways but thankfully there have not been any serious incidents in our region.
"Elsewhere in the country people have had their homes destroyed as a result of fires caused by electric heaters, blankets or a blocked chimney.
"That not only puts lives at risk, but could lead to you being left homeless this Christmas or significantly out of pocket. "
More advice on the Cost of Living Crisis: