As we creep closer to the summer months, our thoughts are turning to holidays, and for many of us that means planning a staycation in the UK. The lure and freedom of the open road, is fuelling the growth of UK caravan holidays. Although uncommon, there are on average 260 fires per year that occur in caravans, and there are key steps that should be taken to ensure families are never at risk.
The provision of power and heat is a day-to-day need and as such, the steps taken to protect against carbon monoxide poisoning and fire are just as important as if it were in the home.
Here, we share tips for getting ahead with fire safety precautions and legal requirements as holiday season approaches.
Ensure gas and electric appliances are regularly serviced
Most caravans use both gas and electric, therefore it’s important to acknowledge that correct maintenance and safety regulations are observed. All gas appliances must be installed in accordance with current gas safety requirements and the appliance manufacturer’s instructions. This is to comply with the law and ensure minimal risk to families using the facilities.
Ensure fire safety equipment is close to hand
Fire safety is of the utmost importance – there are several devices that should be close to hand for use in the unfortunate event of a fire. As they are in a home, a carbon monoxide detector and smoke alarm are absolute essentials for fire safety. A smoke alarm is often the first alert for fires happening through the night. Although little maintenance is required throughout their life, there are a few measures that should be takens to ensure the device is working how it should. A smoke alarm should be tested weekly and regularly vacuumed to pick up any dust around the unit. #TestItTuesday, a viral social campaign, is drawing attention to this in an effort to remind landlords and caravan site owners that weekly checks are crucial in adhering to regulations. The unit’s batteries need replacing every year and the whole component needs completely replacing after 10.
Cooking in enclosed spaces also heightens the risk of a potential fire becoming quickly out of hand. Any fire caused by igniting cooking oils and fats must be extinguished quickly with a MultiCHEM fire extinguisher. In addition, a fire blanket kept in the kitchen will support in cutting off the oxygen to the contents of a pan when used correctly.
Emergency vehicle routes should be kept free from obstruction
To prevent the spread of fire on site, caravans should be placed with at least six metres between caravan walls and at least three metres clear of associated equipment and the adjacent caravan. The fast-approaching barbeque season can also mean there is an increasing number of awnings and tents around the site. A fire can destroy a tent in less than 60 seconds, so ensure a bucket of water is readily available as a quick go-to safety solution . Keep exit routes clear around a caravan site ensuring that a pathway is clear of obstruction.
Appropriate fire signage across the site
Suitable fire warning systems should be readily available across all premises in the case of an emergency evacuation. Ensuring everyone is clear on the escape route if the worst should happen can be the difference between an injury and fatality. It is imperative that holidaymakers are aware of what is expected of them in the event of a fire, which means being prepared and communicating effectively. Clearly posted signage, exit routes and procedures are vital in the case of emergency to create an understanding of expectations among visitors.
Make sure all fire safety policies and procedures are in place and followed efficiently. Get in touch for more information about fire safety equipment.