Dry ground in the summer means there’s an added risk of a fire starting, but you should take care at all times of the year. Many will still remember the heatwave of summer 2018 and the wildfires that came with it.
Already this year we have seen grass fires start across Merseyside, most notably in Formby woods in April.
Follow these tips to reduce the chance of a wildfire in the countryside:
- Extinguish cigarettes properly and don’t throw cigarette ends on the ground – take your litter home
- Never throw cigarette ends out of car windows
- Avoid using open fires in the countryside
- Don’t leave bottles or glass in woodland – sunlight shining through glass can start fires (take them home and recycle them)
- Only use barbecues in a suitable and safe area and never leave them unattended
- If you see a fire in the countryside, call 999 immediately
- Don’t attempt to tackle fires that can’t be put out with a bucket of water – leave the area as quickly as possible.
Stay safe at home
Even if you’re not planning any summer specific activities, there are still ways to ensure you and your family are safe from fire.
- Make sure you have at least one working smoke alarm on each floor of your home and test it every week.
- Keep matches and lighters out of the reach of children
- Don’t overload electrical sockets
- Do not leave cooking unattended. Cooking under the influence of alcohol is extremely dangerous. Remember, NEVER put water onto an oil fire.
- Before going to bed…
- Empty all ashtrays
- Ensure electrical appliances are switched off an unplugged
- Close all internal doors
- Make sure that a key is readily available for each external door
- Never smoke in bed
Make an Escape Plan
Take some time over the next week to plan an escape route with the whole family.
Identify two possible escape routes from every room. Have an arranged meeting place outside in order to be sure everyone has escaped. If you are woken by your smoke alarm or the sound of what you think is a fire, get out, stay out and call 999.
For further information or fire safety advice, call 0800 731 5958.