National Fire Safety Week
Nation Fire Safety Week (http://firesafetyweek.ie/) is jointly run with the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service. It is concerned with enhancing fire safety, particularly in the home. This week is very important in the calendar of fire services around the world.
National Fire Safety Week has its roots in the Great Chicago Fire, which occurred on October 8, 1871. The former American President, Calvin Coolidge proclaimed the first National Fire Prevention Week in 1925 in memory of those who perished in that Fire. Since then, in early October, it has been observed each year in countries around the world.
Unfortunately, on average 32 people die in Ireland each year as a result of fire. House fires account for most fire fatalities. Both the very young and the elderly are particularly vulnerable and these groups account for almost half of the domestic fatalities.
Most of the people who die in fires, die from smoke inhalation(and not from burns), it can take as little as three minutes for this to occur. All family members, relatives and friends of vulnerable people are asked to ensure they are protected against the risk of fire.
The campaign not only encourages people to have smoke alarms and test them but also for the wider community to look out for each other – especially those most vulnerable and at risk.
The following key messages form the focus for National Fire Safety Week in Mayo Fire Service:
- Have a fire escape plan, teach it to your family and practise it regularly;
- Smoke alarms should be tested regularly; as soon as it beeps – change the batteries or replace the alarm. Some homes are still without smoke alarms;
- Most people who die in fires die from smoke inhalation and not from burns, and it can take as little as 3 minutes to die from smoke inhalation;
- The incidence of serious house fires is much higher for older people living alone. Vulnerable members of our community should not be overlooked. Ensure they have working smoke alarms, are be mindful of their fire safety and that they have a plan in place should a fire occur;
- The importance of the safe disposal after use of smoking materials, especially at bedtime;
- The importance of a routine fire safety check - this only takes a few minutes (but could mean the difference between life and death.
Anyone interested in looking for more information on Fire Safety Week can access the link: http://firesafetyweek.ie/ or contact Mayo Fire Service via phone or email as noted below:
Phone: (094) 9064999
Open: 9am to 1pm and 2pm to 5pm Monday to Friday