Fire safety in the home

Smoke alarms

If you do not have a smoke alarm in your home get one installed as soon as possible. Call Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue on (0300 123 4046) and they will come out and install a battery alarm for free.

Only a working smoke alarm will detect a fire. It will give you early warning if a fire occurs in your home and will give you time to escape safely.

Hard-wired smoke alarms are fitted by Stevenage Borough Council in some properties. They run off of the mains electricity, but also have a back-up battery sealed into them so that they will still work if your electricity supply is cut off.

If you have a hard-wired alarm in your home

  • The alarm will beep when the battery runs low and needs replacing. Ring your support worker, or phone our repairs staff on (01438 211011) and someone from our repairs team will come and replace it.
  • If your alarm keeps going off do not attempt to disable it yourself, please contact us.
  • Vacuum your alarm from time to time to remove any dust from the sensors.

If you have a battery alarm in your home

  • Test your alarm at least once a week by pressing the test button
  • The alarm should beep when the battery runs low. When this happens you need to charge or replace the battery - this is your responsibility
  • If your alarm keeps going off do not attempt to disable it yourself, please contact us
  • Never remove the battery to use it in another appliance
  • Vacuum your alarm from time to time to remove any dust from the sensors.

When cooking

  • Never leave cooking unattended, even for a short while. Pay attention to what’s cooking and check how hot it is.
  • Remember – cookers have hot surfaces. Never leave anything near, or on, a hot cooker which could catch fire.
  • Clean grill pans regularly to prevent fat build up. Many fires begin in the kitchen, particularly fat fires. Take special care with chip pans. Electric chip pans are a safer alternative.

If you smoke

  • Make sure that all smoking materials are extinguished correctly.
  • Use an ashtray or another safe disposal method.
  • Never leave smoking materials unattended.
  • Never smoke when tired - falling asleep could result in you accidentally starting a fire.
  • Avoid smoking in bed.

Candles and night lights (tea lights)

  • Make sure that candles and night lights are placed in fireproof holders.
  • Never burn candles or night lights on or close to materials that could catch fire such as TVs, speakers, Christmas trees, curtains and any other flammable objects.
  • Never leave burning candles or night lights unattended. If you leave the room make sure you put them out.

Matches and lighters

  • Never leave matches and lighters where children can reach them.
  • Ensure that your children know that matches and lighters are not toys, and that they can be dangerous and harmful.

Useful links

High rise flats – what you need to know | Hertfordshire County Council