If you care you’ll take heed of Ageing Safely Week.
Take note of the date folks. This is Ageing Safely Week, an initiative run by the Chief Fire Officers Association (CFOA)’s and the perfect time to consider elderly members of the family. Statistically, if you are over the age of 60 you are ten times more likely to die in a fire than you would be if you were 24 or younger.
This places the elderly in a high-risk situation. Ask yourself, are you doing all you can to protect those vulnerable members of your family?
Read a few facts to really drum the message home.
- More women over the age of 60 died in fires than men during 2012/2013
- 271 people died from fire in 2012/2013 – 62% were aged 60 or above
- The risk of dying in a fire if you over 65 is twice the national average
- In 2012/2013 almost 100 people aged over 60 died from burns or smoke inhalation due to fire
- One of the most common causes of domestic fires was cigarettes and other smoker’s materials
This is especially worrying when you consider nearly 25% of people over the age of 65 live on their own and could be in the greatest danger. If you haven’t been to see an elderly relative in a while now might be the right time, Ageing Safely Week is designed to raise awareness and keep the elderly safer in their homes.
What can you do to make a difference?
For starters, go to see elderly relatives and discuss fire safety measures in the home. Ask if they would be happy for their local fire service to perform a home safety visit, this is a very useful exercise which includes:
- A full fire risk assessment of the property
- Identification of wellbeing issues
- Installation of smoke alarms
At the very least if the elderly occupant point blank refuses to have a home safety visit you could install smoke detectors for them and discuss a new fire safety routine. Sit down over a cup of tea and chat about simple fire safety around the home, make it a relaxed but informative exercise.
Some of the points to discuss are:
- Unplugging electrical appliances
- Turning off portable heaters
- Not placing combustibles near heat sources
- Extinguishing cigarettes/pipes properly before retiring to bed
- Taking extra care with chip pans and cooking equipment
- Closing interior doors at night
- Having an escape plan and keeping keys in easy to reach places
Liked this blog? Read another one here.