Tips for not burning your house down

ACTEWAGL is urging customers to spend at least 10 minutes this winter to do a home safety check – for safety’s sake! ActewAGL is joining with ACT Fire & Rescue by providing some winter safety tips to help householders stay safe while they turn up the heating.

Young woman testing smoke alarm on ceiling

Testing a smoke alarm on the ceiling

ActewAGL general manager Network Services Robert Atkin said: “During winter the number of house fires increases with appliances like heaters, clothes dryers and electric blankets switched on. It’s a great time to do a simple safety check around your home and help keep your family safe.

“When the cold weather hits we often pull a lot electrical appliances out of storage. It’s really important to check appliances for fraying cords and other signs of wear and tear. This is especially important for electric blankets.

“Power points and power boards are another important safety consideration. Running too many appliances off one power point by piggy-backing double adaptors or connecting power boards together, can overload the circuit and lead to overheating, damage to equipment, or even cause a fire in your home.

“Portable electric heaters can be a fire hazard if care is not taken. When using portable electric heaters it is important to keep heaters at least 1.5 metres away from flammable materials like curtains or bedding, don’t operate them in confined spaces and always supervise children near electric heaters.

“Natural gas appliances and heaters should also be checked before they’re used. We recommend that they are also serviced annually by a licensed gas fitter, in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.”

We use electricity every day and often take it for granted – but you have to take care when using it.

ActewAGL’s 10-minute safety check:

1. Check you have working smoke alarms.

2. Check appliances for fraying cords and other signs of wear and tear.

3. Check that power points and power boards aren’t overloaded.

4. Check there is adequate ventilation around power points, especially behind beds, TV cabinets and furniture.

5. Clean heaters and fans to make sure they are free of dust and dirt.

6. Have your natural gas appliances checked and maintained annually by a licensed gas fitter, in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.

For more electricity and gas safety information visit actewagl.com.au/safety

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