With the start of winter just days away, the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) is urging Western Australians to stay safe and understand their home fire risks.
Last year between June and August, four people were tragically killed and another 28 injured in house fires in Western Australia.
Fire crews battled 223 accidental house fires across the State during the same period, up nearly five per cent from the previous year.
DFES Fire Investigation and Analysis Unit District Officer Andy Duckworth said the risks associated with house fires were often underestimated and complacency could be deadly.
“Fire can engulf your home in a matter of minutes, putting you, your family and your pets in grave danger,” District Officer Duckworth said.
“Anyone who has had to deal with the devastating impact of house fire will tell you that they never thought it would happen to them. Sadly, the reality is that house fires can happen at any time.”
District Officer Duckworth said taking a proactive approach to home fire safety was the best way to protect lives and property.
“Most home fires can be prevented with a bit of common sense. Don’t leave cooking or candles unattended, always clean the lint filter in your dryer and make sure you keep all materials at least one metre away from heaters and wood fireplaces.
“It is important to clean and maintain your smoke alarm once a month, replace the batteries once a year and replace the device every 10 years - it could give you a few extra minutes to get out of your home safely if a fire starts,” he said.
District Officer Duckworth said it was also essential to have and practice a home fire escape plan with your family.
For more information and tips on how to keep your home and family safe this winter visit dfes.wa.gov.au/wintersafe/
Media Contact: DFES Media and Corporate Communications 9225 5955.