Smoke alarm alerts neighbour in Edinburgh

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Crews from Sighthill and Tollcross attended. #WeekofAction

Elderlyposter

Firefighters were called to a grill pan fire in a kitchen at a flat in Edinburgh yesterday evening (23 June) after a neighbour was alerted by the smoke alarm.

Crews from Sighthill and Tollcross fire stations were mobilised by Edinburgh Operations Control at 5.40pm to Shandon Street in Edinburgh and on arrival discovered a small fire due a pan of food alight in the kitchen.

On arrival firefighters found that the pan of food was extinguished prior to their arrival.  The pan had caught alight due to the elderly male occupant falling and being unable to attend to it.

The elderly male casualty was given oxygen therapy at the scene by firefighters for slight smoke inhalation and was passed into the care of the Scottish Ambulance Service. He did not require hospital treatment.

Group Manager Steve Gourlay was quick to praise the neighbour.  He said: “Thanks to the neighbour hearing the working smoke alarm, we were alerted quickly to the incident and prevented a serious fire.”

Firefighters throughout Scotland are , this week, running a ‘week of action’ aimed at preventing accidental house fires and the tragedies they cause.

People over the age of 60 accounted for almost two-thirds of those killed and, as well as age, the common factors contributing to many of the deaths were smoking, ill-health, living alone and limited mobility.

The ‘Week of Action’ will involve local senior officers calling on the support of partner agencies to reach those who they know to be at risk.

By visiting homes firefighters can help residents understand the risks and take very minor actions known to dramatically reduce the chance of a fire starting.

Group Manager Gourlay said: “If someone is over the age of 60, lives alone or has difficulty moving around then it can take more time for them to escape in an emergency.

“They need to know not to smoke in bed, or even while feeling tired and sitting in a chair. If the person just can’t avoid doing this then we can work with partners and communities to help make them safer.

“There is a huge amount of support available but we need our partner agencies and the public to help us make sure it gets to those who need it.”

He continued: “We also want to remind people that if they hear a smoke alarm activating then they need to call 999 and report it right away.

“Many people can be reluctant to make an emergency call and assume an alarm has gone off due to something innocuous like burnt toast, but the fact is waiting to see if the alarm stops could cost someone their life.”

With an aging population – 23 per cent of the UK will be aged 65 and over by 2035 – helping older people prevent fires and stay safe is certain to remain an issue for every community.

Free home fire safety visits take around 20 minutes to complete and are conducted by local SFRS crews at a time convenient for the householder.

A popular feature of the Join Scotland’s Fight against Fire campaign, they are available by calling the freephone number 0800 073 1999, by texting ‘FIRE’ to 80800 or by filling in an online form at www.firescotland.gov.uk.

#WeekofAction 

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