Yeohead & Castleton Parish Council

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Have you gone through your winter safety routine?

Seasonal advice from Dorset Fire and Rescue Service

The clocks have gone back, there is a cold crispness to the morning and evening air. Winter is approaching. It is this time of year when the central heating is turned back on, we get the electric blanket out of the cupboard, we prepare more hot meals and the festive season sees us using more candles and open fires.

For Dorset Fire and Rescue Service, we see changes to the types of emergency calls at this time of year. Many accidental fires in the home could be easily avoided if we spend a few minutes to think about our safety. Being aware of the dangers of fire and taking simple preventative measures could help save the lives of you and your family.

Your home is full of potential fire risks. If you are aware of these risks you can ensure that you GET SMART and reduce the chances of a fire starting in your home. We have highlighted below some of the most common causes of house fires at this time of the year.

  • Smoking. Always use proper ashtrays and ensure that cigarettes are put out properly! Remember it is easy to be careless when you are tired or if you have been drinking.

  • Candles. Always use a proper holder and never leave them unattended. Ensure you put them out completely at night.

  • Lights. Use common sense and keep lights away from combustible items, like curtains and other fabrics. Check those festive lights and remember to turn them off when you go to bed.

  • Cooking. (including chip pans and deep-frying). Never leave a saucepan on the heat if you are called away, keep the top of your cooker clean and keep toasters away from curtains. Make sure the festive roast is not the festive toast!!

  • Heaters and fires. Always position heaters at least one metre (three feet) from combustibles such as furniture, curtains or clothing. Always use a fireguard for open fires.

  • Overloaded or faulty electrics. Be careful not to overload sockets and be sure to use the correct adaptor. Do not plug an adaptor into another adaptor. Always turn off electrical appliances at the wall, rather than leaving them on standby - and never mend cables with insulating tape.

CHECK YOUR SMOKE ALARM. Check the battery is working by pressing the test button. This should be done weekly.

Fires strike when you least expect them, often during the night so ensure that you and your loved ones have an escape plan of what to do and where to go in the event of a fire. Be aware that although fires spread quickly, it is smoke that is the real killer. If you are asleep when a fire starts and you don't have a smoke alarm to wake you, your chances of surviving are very slim.

GET EQUIPPED. Smoke alarms are a proven life saver. Dorset Fire and Rescue Service can offer a free home safe check to priority groups. If you have no smoke detectors we can install, free of charge, a 10 year smoke alarm. We can also test existing alarms and replace them if necessary. We can also provide alarms with strobe lighting and vibrating pads for people with hearing impairments.

Finally, if you are unfortunate to experience a fire in your home, GET OUT, CALL US OUT, STAY OUT.


Nigel Williams

Assistant Chief Fire Officer

Please contact the Parish Clerk:

Rose Edwards, Townsend Cottage, Poyntington, DT9 4LF

Tel: 01963 220491 - Email:


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