Council launches ‘Stay Warm, Stay Safe’ safety campaign

Council launches ‘Stay Warm, Stay Safe’ safety campaign

Fri, March 22, 2024

From damaged hot water bottles to poorly stored electric blankets, staying warm in our homes can pose many significant hazards. 

Every year, dozens of people in the UK are seriously injured in fires caused by common household items which are faulty or not being used properly.

In an effort to reinforce the potential dangers of heating and electrical devices, Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council is working with other councils in Northern Ireland to launch a ‘Stay Warm, Stay Safe’ campaign focusing on electric blankets/heated throws, hot-water bottles, overloaded electrical sockets, electrical chargers and portable heaters.

Alongside an online campaign, a leaflet has been produced which brings together a list of safety tips and checks to help eliminate risks in the home and demonstrates how the misuse of household items can prove dangerous.

Councillor Margaret-Anne McKillop, Deputy Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, explained that a few simple safety tips can make all the difference in terms of preventing a serious accident.

“At this time of year, staying warm in our homes is a priority for people and with energy costs remaining very high, we know that some residents will be using a number of different heating devices. Buying genuine branded goods from reputable retailers is a good first step,” Cllr McKillop said.

“Many homes have hot-water bottles, but some might not realise that it’s advisable to replace them every two years,” she added.

“Also, electric blankets must be stored carefully to avoid damage which could lead to a fire.  So many household items have devices with lithium batteries, such as mobile phones, tablets, laptops, e-cigarettes, e-bikes and e-scooters. These need to be charged carefully to prevent them from overheating and causing a fire.” 

Cllr McKillop also pointed out that electrical sockets “can easily become overloaded by using extension leads or adaptors with too many devices plugged in”.

She advised those using these items to check their current rating to ensure they do not overheat. 

“Some of these safety steps may seem obvious, but it is worth taking a few minutes to ensure everyone in your household follows the manufacturer’s instructions,” she added.

“We urge people to share this information with family members and friends, particularly those who regularly use these items.”

Anyone who is interested in downloading a copy of the Stay Safe, Stay Warm can download it here. 

Households with a child under the age of five, or a person aged over 65, or anyone with a mobility issue or special need can avail of a free home safety visit. 

Safety equipment may be provided and with householder’s consent onward referrals made to other agencies who can assist. 

For further information or to request a home safety visit you can contact the Council’s Environmental Health Department by emailing or telephone 028 2766 0200.

Deputy Mayor Councillor Margaret Ann McKillop joins Council staff Sharon McAfee Head of Health and Built Environment and Nicky Matthews Building Control Manager to promote the Stay Warm Stay Safe Campaign.