18.12.14 Stoves: Stay safe at Christmas

Posted on December 18, 2014
Archive : December 2014
Category : News
Christmas is an exciting time for everyone, but sometimes with all that excitement and Advocaat common sense goes straight out the door. RoSPA, the accident prevention people, offer simple advice for a safe and happy Christmas. We've added a few of our own stove-related safety tips as well.
  • If you haven't used your stove for months (some people don't) and it emits smoke into the room then evacuate the room immediately and let the fire go out. Do not re-use the stove until the source of the problem has been dealt with. In our experience this is usually a blocked baffle plate or flueway. The same goes if the CO alarm should sound. NB some adverse weather conditions can also cause this problem
  • If you have children or the elderly on their annual visit and you don't normally use a fireguard, then you must use one (it's your legal responsibility). It's all too easy to take your eyes off the little ones with all the excitable grown-ups around
  • Don't let any helpful guests who are unfamiliar with stoves operate or re-fuel your stove as this could lead to dangerous over-firing
  • Don't be tempted to operate your stove with the door open because it looks more Christmassy. This will make it unsafe (uncontrolled combustion etc) because they're not designed to do that
  • Unwrap presents well away from the stove or fire and dispose of used wrappings quickly. Don't put them in the stove as their ash will 'smother' the embers and produce an inefficient fire
  • Keep decorations and cards away from stoves and fires as well as other heat sources such as light fittings. Christmas trees, decorations and cards are responsible for around 40 house fires, leading to approximately 20 non-fatal casualties, each year
  • Don't leave burning candles on or near your stove as they'll melt much quicker than you think. Never leave them unattended, and double-check that you've put them all out before heading to bed. Candles caused nearly 1,000 house fires in the UK, resulting in 9 deaths and 388 casualties in 2012
  • Don't be tempted to 'borrow' the battery from your smoke detector for your new toy or gadget
  • Follow the Firework Safety Code for all of your new year fireworks
With a little more care and forward planning, most accidents could be avoided. So have a happy, and above all safe and cosy Christmas, from everyone at The Stove Yard.
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