Fire safety

How to reduce the risk of fire around your home

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Members of our team regularly inspect all our blocks of flats and test fire alarms each month, and sheltered housing fire alarms weekly. We also carry out regular audits, ensuring communal areas remain clear and uncluttered. Fire safety signage is displayed prominently and we carry out formal fire risk assessments, as well as extensive fire safety drills with the fire service at our larger blocks of flats. No Chorus Homes blocks of flats have the kind of cladding that Grenfell Towers employed on the outside of the building.

Here are some simple steps you can take to keep yourself, your family and your home as safe as possible.

What to do if there's a fire

  • Don't try to put the fire out yourself — fire spreads quickly and this will leave less time for you and your household to leave safely.
  • Evacuate to a safe area outside the property as soon as you become aware of a fire. Close any doors as you go.
  • Don’t use the lift if you live in a flat.
  • Call the fire brigade on 999 (or 112) once you are somewhere safe. Tell the operator the address where the fire is and don’t end the call until the operator has repeated it back to you.
  • Don’t put yourself or anyone else at risk by returning into the building.

Detection and escape planning

  • Test your smoke alarms once a week — don’t remove the batteries
  • Keep door and window keys accessible.
  • Make sure that children in your household know basic fire safety rules.
  • Make a plan to support you and your family to get out quickly if a fire breaks out in your home. Ensure everyone knows their evacuation routes and the location of the safe area to meet. Practice this with them.
  • If you live in a block of flats ensure you read the Fire Action Notice located inside the main entrance of your block so you know what to do if there's a fire in the building. Make sure you and your family know how you will be alerted to a fire and what you must do.
  • Safely store items within your home — ensure that your escape routes aren’t blocked or difficult to navigate due to items left on or around the stairs or in corridors.
  • If you live in a flat please don’t leave any items in the communal escape route areas (corridors, lobbies, landings and stairs). If you notice a build-up of items in these areas or have any concerns regarding escape routes, then please let us know.
  • Let us know about any damage to fire detection, suppression and protection equipment or to fire doors within blocks of flats.
  • If you live in a flat and the closer fitted to your front door doesn't work or your flat front door doesn’t fully self-close please let us know.

Hazardous items

  • Avoid using candles — consider using realistic battery operated versions.
  • Don’t store items in your home that are flammable or could put you or your family at risk.
  • Only use the fixed heating system in your home. If this is not possible use only a convector heater in your hall or corridor. Don’t use any form of radiant heater such as a gas or paraffin heater or an electric bar fire.

Kitchen safety

  • Never leave pans unattended when cooking.
  • Don’t cook if you are tired, have been drinking alcohol or taking medication that may make you drowsy.

Balcony safety

  • Do not use or store barbecues on your balcony under any circumstances.
  • Do not use or store gas bottles, lighter fluid or other liquids that could add to a fire on your balcony.
  • Do not use other materials such as wooden privacy screens as these can help to spread a fire should one occur.
  • Reduce clutter and keep items on your balcony to a minimum.
  • If you smoke make sure that you fully extinguish cigarettes in a suitable ashtray and never flick them off your balcony.

Electrical safety

  • Close all your doors, switch off and unplug electrical items such as the TV or chargers when you go to bed.
  • Don’t overload electrical sockets.
  • Use manufacturers recommended chargers for portable devices such as phones and tablets, ensuring they’re charged in an area with good ventilation so they don’t overheat.
  • Remember that if you want to make improvements or alterations to your home please ensure you have our written permission before proceeding.
  • An extension lead should only be used when it is not possible to reach a wall socket with the equipment cable. Ensure that the lead is kept in good condition and that the extension lead plug contains the correctly rated fuse for the equipment being used.

Safe smoking

  • Don’t leave lit cigarettes unattended.
  • If you smoke, ensure cigarettes are put right out.
  • Keep matches and lighters well out of the reach of children.
  • Never smoke in bed or anywhere else where you might fall asleep.

If you are unsure about fire safety, ask your local fire and rescue service for a free home fire safety check.