Alcohol revealed as cause of 25 per cent of fires, as Derbyshire fire service issue warning

Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service has issued safety advice for the festive period, as the monthly average number of fires, injuries and fatalities more than doubles in December.

Tuesday, 10th December 2019, 11:25 am
Updated Tuesday, 10th December 2019, 10:29 pm
The video shows a fire spreading rapidly

A dramatic video showing the effects faulty lights can have on a dry tree has been released by firefighters as part of their Christmas safety campaign.

The fire starts at the base of a Christmas tree, and in seconds, the video shows a living room enveloped with fire

A spokesperson for the service said: “Without taking extra care, it is easy to become distracted with so much going on and easy for disaster to strike.

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“The direct cause of 25 per cent of all fires can be attributed to alcohol.

“In 33 per cent of all fires, alcohol consumption was a contributing factor.

“Many of us enjoy a merry tipple over the festive season but be sure to avoid cooking whilst under the influence of alcohol.

“During the festive season please check on elderly relatives and neighbours as they are at greater risk from fire. Remember to look up for smoke alarms and contact your local fire service if you think they would benefit from a visit from our community fire safety officers.”

“Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service would like to ensure everyone has a safe and happy festive season. Please take a moment to read our top tips for keeping you and your family safe.”

Christmas Fire Safety Tips

Don’t drink and drive – get taxis booked for any nights out on the town. Never cook after drinking – you can easily become distracted. Ensure you test your smoke alarms regularly. NEVER remove the batteries from your smoke alarms. Don't overload sockets. Ensure only one plug per socket. If you've been out for the night get a take away rather than attempt to cook. Be wary of being distracted due to a houseful of guests. Never leave cooking unattended. Keep candles away from decorations, Christmas trees, cards, wrapping paper, fires, lights and heaters. Unplug Christmas lights when you're going to bed or leaving the house. Check lights conform to a safety standard, e.g. British Standard 60598 Don't block exits with Christmas trees, presents etc. If you are using extra heaters ensure they are away from curtains, sofas, Christmas trees and decorations etc. Make sure that everyone in your home knows what to do in a fire - in the event of fire you should get out, stay out and call 999