Electrical fire safety
Electricity is often overlooked as a possible fire hazard. This may be because there is no flame. However, some 28,000 fires in the home are reported each year as being caused by electrical faults, accidents or misuse of electrical equipment.
Video - tips to help prevent a fire
Transcript - electrical fire safety video (new window, PDF 46KB)
Video - electrical fire safety advice (new window, Movie 20873KB)
Check to see if your plug sockets are overloaded
Are your sockets overloaded? Use our handy calculator to check:
Electrical safety tips
Don't overload plug sockets - An extension lead or adaptor will have a limit to how many amps it can take so, to help reduce the risk of fire, be careful not to overload them. Use the calculator tool (above) to assess whether or not you are overloading an adaptor.
Regularly check for frayed or worn cables and wires - Check to see if the cable is fastened securely to the plug and check the socket for scorch marks. You should always carry out these checks before you plug an appliance in.
Unplug appliances when not in use - This helps to reduce the risk of fire. Unplug appliances when you go to bed or when you go out unless they are designed to be left on, like fridges and freezers.
Keep electrical appliances clean and in good working order - Look out for fuses that blow, circuit-breakers that trip for no obvious reason and flickering lights to prevent them triggering a fire.
Check for British or European safety mark - Make sure an appliance has a British or European safety mark when you buy it.
Always check that you use the right fuse to prevent overloading - When you're fitting or replacing a fuse, it's important to use the right fuse for the appliance to make sure the cable doesn't overheat and that the appliance is protected in the event of a fault.
Get Out, Stay Out, Call 999 - Never use water on an electrical fire and don't take any risks with your safety. Pull the plug out or switch the power off if it is safe to do so. Get out, stay out and call 999.
Charging devices - Don't leave devices charging for long periods and making sure that you are using the correct chargers can all help prevent a fire starting in your home. If you are using laptops, don’t put them on soft furnishings, beds and duvets as this increases the chance of them overheating and catching fire.
For further information on electrical safety, please use the following links:
Circuit protection reduces the likelihood of an electrical fire occurring. Contact an approved professional for advice on circuit protection or to have your circuit protection checked.
Register your electrical appliances for a safer home
Only 36% of consumers register all of their large domestic appliances.
Register my appliance (opens in new window)
The Register my appliance website is designed to make it quicker and easier for the public to register all of their appliances. It provides up-to-date, accurate, contact information for owners who have acquired specific models of appliances within the last twelve years, so manufacturers can issue safety updates or repair notifications to the right homes. The website provides access to the registration pages of over 40 leading brands of domestic appliances, including most of the UK’s top selling brands of major white goods.
You can also check if any of your electrical goods have been recalled (opens in new window)
How safe is your home?
Complete our online home safety check and you will get a personalised fire safety plan, which will offer advice on how to prevent fires in your home.
Do the online home safety check
Safe and well visit
Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service offer a free 'Safe and Well Visit' for people who are aged over 65 and for people who are referred to us by partner agencies because they are considered to be at a particular risk.
Safe and Well Visits incorporate the traditional fire safety information (and smoke alarm fitting), but also offer additional advice on slips, trips, fall prevention and bowel cancer screening.
Book a Safe and Well Visit for over 65's