Residents in the North West urged to check alarms
CFA and MFB are urging residents in the North West Region of Victoria to take greater care around the home as new figures show electrical fires were one of the most common causes of preventable house fires last year.
Firefighters attended 3,211 preventable house fires across Victoria in 2015, with more than 40 per cent of these starting in the kitchen.
Electrical fires were responsible for 22 per cent of fires in the home across Victoria, with half of these put down to faulty appliances or electrical distribution.
The number of bedroom fires was also on the rise, accounting for almost one in 10 fires, up 14 per cent on the previous year.
CFA Chief Officer Joe Buffone said he had no doubt our love of modern technology played a part in many of these fires.
“Just like any electrical appliances, phones, laptops and tablets are at risk of faults which could cause items to overheat and spark a fire,” Mr Buffone said.
“These items can pose a danger, especially if left charging on flammable materials such as a bed.”
CFA North West Region Manager Community Safety Mr David Allen said the findings highlight the importance of ensuring homes are fitted with working smoke alarms.
He said it was also important homes were fitted with more than one smoke alarm, especially inside bedrooms where the doors can be closed, but they can be fitted legally outside a bedroom area like a hallway if you sleep with the bedroom door open.
“Many people don’t realise that our sense of smell is dulled when we’re asleep,” Mr Allen said.
“The smell of smoke isn’t going to wake you up. Only working smoke alarms save lives, and they have to be maintained to ensure they’re in working order.”
Smoke alarms have a 10-year life span. Anything older should be replaced with a long-life lithium battery powered alarm.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *