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Monitored smoke detectors save lives

80-year old lady rescued by firefighters after a pan left on the stove caught fire and she had fallen asleep. According to the government’s fire statistics monitor, in 2014-15 there were over 250 fatalities and over 3,200 non-fatal hospital casualties from fire in England.

Despite these being the lowest numbers recorded to date, the majority (over 60%) of the deaths were caused by accidental fires in the home.

There is further evidence that highlights the saddening fact that people aged 60 or above were 10 times more likely to die in a fire from burns and/or asphyxiation than younger generations and that smokers’ materials, cookers, candles, coal fires, heaters and electric blankets were the main sources of ignition.

Based on our own experiences with fire emergencies, we understand how important it is to raise the alarm as quickly as possible to avoid anyone getting hurt. Following is an example of how our specialist smoke detectors were triggered and directly alerted our contact centre via an alarm call whilst also activating a local audible alarm in the home.

An 80-year old lady with limited mobility was rescued by fire fighters after a pan left on the stove caught fire and she had fallen asleep.

Fortunately, the elderly resident was protected by our Lifeline System with a specialist smoke alarm, which meant that as soon as the smoke detector was activated, an operator at our 24-hour monitoring centre was automatically alerted and could place the 999 call to the Fire Service.

Our call operator also informed a neighbour of the situation and advised them not to enter the property as the fire brigade was on its way. Upon arrival, firefighters entered the smoke-logged house and immediately lifted the owner out to fresh air where she was given oxygen therapy. She was subsequently taken to hospital by ambulance.

The Incident Commander advised that: “this early alert received through the Welbeing lifeline system has led to a successful rescue and really emphasises the value of the telecare-linked smoke alarms. Without Welbeing’s quick actions, the outcome could have been very different. I have called the resident and she is fine.”

Take a look at some fire safety tips for your home:

  • Minimise the risk of fire in the home by checking white goods and appliances are in good working order (no matter their age) and electric wiring meets latest government regulations. Also, it is advised that clothes are not placed on or close to fireguards or heaters to dry.
  • Your local fire and rescue services may offer free home safety visits and advice about how to make your home safer, as well as fitting smoke alarms and help you to plan escape routes. To arrange a visit, please contact your local fire service – you can find their details on the directory.
  • If you do smoke, please avoid smoking in bed and always make sure that pipe tobacco, cigarettes and cigars are completely put out.
  • Gas appliances, wood or coal burning stoves and open fires can be dangerous, not just because of the naked flame aspect but also due to the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. So it is important to have such heating systems serviced to make sure that fireguards are correctly fitted and carbon monoxide detectors are operating at all times. For more information, please read our recent blog on how to keep warm during colder months.

According to Fire Door Safety Week, care home companies throughout the UK have paid over £290,000 in fines due to fire door safety failings and various serious offences which put residents’ health and lives at risk.

Therefore, it is important that individuals who live in assisted or care home environments have an understanding of fire emergency procedures and are aware that their landlords must abide to the government’s Fire Safety Order legislation with the aim to maintain highest levels of safety standards for residents.

Find out more

If you would like to find out more about our linked smoke detectors, please call our friendly team in Eastbourne on 01323 644422.

For more information about our other Lifeline services please download our brochure for our full range of personal safety and healthcare solutions.

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