- Smoking: Smoking is the leading cause of domestic fires. A cigarette butt that is not put out properly can stay alight for a few hours and can cause a flame if it comes into contact with flammable materials, such as furniture.
Smoking is especially risky in the bedrooms where there are several items of clothing and beddings which can easily catch fire. Bedrooms are best kept off limits for smoking. Fires started in the bedroom make up 73% of all house fire fatalities.
- Curious Children: Children can cause a fire out of curiosity, to see what would happen if they set fire to an object.
Keep any matches or lighters out of reach of children, to avoid any curiosity turned disaster.
- Barbeques and grills are great for an outdoor meal, but should always be done away from the home, table cloths or any plants and tree branches.
- Lighting: Lamp shades and light fittings can build up heat if they are very close to light bulbs and lamp bases can become a hazard if they are able to be knocked over easily.
- Poor awareness of what fire is and how it can be prevented has led to a lot of domestic fire outbreak. Being ignorant of firefighting gadgets will make one to ignore gadgets that can save property during a fire outbreak. Ignorance will also make one to be compromised while buying electrical appliances, fittings and wiring.
Arson as a cause of fire:
Arson is defined as a malicious burning of the property of another. The house can be set on fire during a riot, strike or social unrest. Arson and intentional fires mostly occur outside, but most of the associated deaths, injuries, and losses occur in structures, particularly in homes.
Fire outbreaks due to arson are often beyond the householder’s control. However, one’s political and religious views may make the householder’s property a target for arsonist
Lightening as a cause of fire:
Lightening can cause fire outbreaks. This can be prevented by installation of lighting arresters.
By Kenneth Obong’o Oballa
Training Manager, Zep-Re,
(PTA Reinsurance Company).