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Resolve to stay safe and warm this winter

2nd January 2009

With winter setting in and darker nights, North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service are urging residents to make a new year’s resolution to stay warm but safe as the colder weather takes hold.

Group Manager for Community Safety, David Dryburgh said: “As it gets colder and darker it’s inevitable that we all spend more time indoors staying as cosy as possible. You might take additional measures to keep warm such as heaters and candles but these may bring an increased risk of fire into the home.  By following some simple rules you can ensure you stay safe and warm.

"North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service are here to help and offer advice.  If you are in any doubt over any fire safety issues, please do get in touch.  We all want to be warm in winter, but we must avoid tragedy.”

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service have the following advice to help you reduce your fire risk this winter:

Fires and Heaters

  • Always use a fire guard to protect an open fire against flying sparks and hot embers and make sure embers are properly put out before you go out or go to bed.
  • Keep portable heaters away from curtains and furniture and never use them for drying clothes.  Always unplug electric heaters when you go out or go to bed.

Electric Blankets

  • Never use hot water bottles in the same bed as an electric blanket, even if the blanket is switched off.
  • Unplug blankets before you get into bed, unless they have a thermostat control for safe all-night use.
  • Don’t leave electric blankets folded as this damages the internal wiring.  Store them flat or rolled up instead.


  • Make sure candles are secured in a proper holder and away from materials that may catch fire, such as curtains.
  • Make sure candles are put out completely when you leave the room or go to bed.

Smoke alarms 

  • Remember to test your smoke alarm every week and install one on every level of your home - working smoke alarms save lives.

Dave Dryburgh continues: “North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service offers free Home Fire Risk Checks, giving advice on fire safety and where appropriate, fitting smoke alarms.  If you put it off last year, make it your New Year’s resolution to get in touch with us.”

For more information, visit or call the Fire Safety Advice Line on 01609 788545.

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