5 common causes of house fires

5 common causes of house fires

Stay safe at home armed with the knowledge of what the most common sources of house fire are. Fires can occur during any season, so it’s important not to become complacent just because the electric heaters are away and the weather is warming up. Here are five of the most common causes of house fires and some precautions you can take right now to protect yourself year-round.

Cooking 

A very large portion of house fires begin in the kitchen. Make sure to turn off the oven and stove right after cooking. Also ensure you follow all microwave instructions as some items cannot be place inside this appliance. With plenty of entertaining happening during the warmer months, it’s important not to get distracted in the kitchen too, stay aware to stay safe.

Electrical fires

Electric blankets are a very common cause for house fires, however there are also other culprits. Your clothes dryer is full of lint and materials that can catch fire, make sure to clear out the lint catcher after each use. Ensure any new appliances are installed professionally. And when it comes to lighting, watch for flammable lampshades with delicate materials heating up. Most households have plenty of technology devices, such as, smart phones, tablets and laptops. Be aware how many you have plugged in and charging and be mindful of the surface you leave these devices charging on. Leaving them on soft surfaces such as couches, beds, rugs could cause a fire.

Open flames

With the popularly of scented candles used throughout the home, home fire risks increase. Never leave your candles unattended, don’t light them near curtains or flammable materials, and be aware not to leave candles lit around children.

Another common cause of house fires is occupants smoking in bed. If you do smoke, never do so around flammable materials, gas, or in bed as hot ash can easily set alight.

Home heating

According to DFES, 73 percent of all house fire fatalities occur due to fires in the bedroom and lounge room. This high death rate is due to sources of heat being left unattended, where the occupant has fallen asleep or left the room, therefore it’s very important not to ignore this cause of fire.

Home heating such as open fires and heaters should only be used when there is someone in the room. Don’t drape your clothes over the heater and watch for logs rolling out of your fireplace.

With warmer weather approaching it’s not so common to have heating turned on, however do ensure your chimney is clean in order to prevent your home from catching fire from exterior sources.

Children and families

Due to the curious nature of children, it’s vital not to leave them alone with any open flames, matches, lighters, or hot appliances. Make sure to educated your children about fire safety, and teach them to bring any matches and lighters to an adult if found, however do make sure to store these well out of reach of little hands in the first place.

When it comes to fires in the home, put a fire escape plan in place for your family. Make sure everyone knows to stop, drop, and roll, as well as how to get out of the house and call 000 if there is a fire. It’s also recommended to check your fire alarms monthly and change batteries every year.

By understanding fire hazards and educating your family about them, you can ensure your home and its contents are as safe as possible.  It’s also important to have a home and contents insurance policy in place to ensure your belongings as well as your home are covered in the case that there is fire damage.

Contact CGU on 13 24 81 for more information about Home and Contents Insurance products.