Isle of Wight Ferry Fire puts a dampener on the Bank Holiday Weekend

Over 100 passengers were evacuated after a fire broke out on a Wightlink Ferry over the weekend. The ferry, a shuttle from Yarmouth on the Isle of Wight to Lymington, Hampshire was suspended upon its arrival on the Isle of Wight, all passengers disembarked safely.

The fire, it would appear, started in the engine room where crew knew exactly what to do and an extinguishing system was deployed. The Maritime and Coastguard Agency has been told about the fire and Wightlink said its engineers would also carry out an investigation.

After an apology from the ferry company, Whitelink, the transportation service resumed on Monday morning.

Five miles of water divide the Isle of Wight from the mainland. A popular destination for old and young alike, attractions include Queen Victoria’s Osborne House, the sands at Alum Bay and Blackgang Chine. Hopefully the delayed ferry passengers weren’t put out too much when they had extra time on the island whilst they awaited their ferry back to the mainland.

For all your fire safety needs including fire alarms, smoke alarms, extinguishers, fire blankets, fire risk assessments and the ever important fire safety training for your staff contact our own specialist people at Bath & West Fire & Safety.

Get up and go! … but don’t forget this

With the bank holiday just around the corner many of us are making the most of the long weekend to pack our bags and head for the country or the seaside. If you are lucky enough to own a caravan trailer or campervan you can literally pack the kitchen sink, along with washing up liquid and tea-towels, as well as the raw ingredients to make a slap-up supper everyone can enjoy.

But when you are making your list for things to pack, don’t forget to tick the box for a fire extinguisher and fire blanket. You also need to test the smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detector in the vehicle before you set off. There has been a spate of holiday caravan fires in the West Country this summer. Dorset, Devon and Cornwall firefighters have all been on high alert after caravan fires have been reported on campsites and beauty spots.

When cooking in your caravan, take special care, watch children and never leave a stove unattended. Never block air vents and keep your gas cylinders outside your caravan. Turn off all appliances before going to bed … and never use a cooker whilst your caravan is moving

It is vital to remember that should a fire start in a caravan the most important rule is to get everyone out before attempting to tackle any fire. For all your fire safety needs including fire alarms, smoke alarms, extinguishers, fire blankets, fire risk assessments and fire safety training for your staff contact our specialist staff at Bath & West Fire & Safety.

Crowded Cornwall? Camping is the Life!

If this August presents you with a few days of rest and relaxation, why not consider a couple of nights in the countryside under canvas? Nowadays one can pick up a tent for pocket change, and set off for the great outdoors for a fresh air adventure such as this fantastic camping site in Wales (hopefully that car is going to be moved).

Camping is growing in popularity for a great way to spend time with the family. There’s the tent to build for a start, usually a team effort after the perfect pitch has been discovered, discussed, tested and debated. It is always wise to pitch your tent at least 6 metres from any other tent, and well away from parked vehicles. Then, after the tent is up its time to make the place a home for a few days, don’t forget your book and a few games, especially if there is no phone signal. Also let everyone know where the torch is, a pail of water, and where escape routes are in case of an emergency.

All that activity is bound to work up an appetite so alfresco cooking is the best way to do it when you are out in the sticks. Before you light a fire, make sure that fires are permitted on your campsite. If you have a solid fuel stove, make sure you light it correctly, never use petrol or paraffin to light a fire. Remember to keep flammable liquids (such as petrol and gas cylinders) outside and away from children. Only change gas cylinders when they’re completely empty and store them away from caravans and vehicles. Make sure the gas pipe connection is secure. If you suspect a leak, turn off the main cylinder valve. Never smoke whilst changing your gas. Never take a barbecue into a tent.

Happy camping! For all your fire safety needs including fire alarms, smoke alarms, extinguishers, fire blankets, fire risk assessments and fire safety training for your staff contact our specialist staff at Bath & West Fire & Safety.

A Tale of Seven Sheds

The summer of 2018 is turning out to be a scorcher and for those of us who enjoy a ‘barbie’ or two its been a great opportunity to fire up those coals for some alfresco fun. The garden has become another living room as the balmy evenings continue, everyone can relax watching the embers glow into the night.

Your garden may be large and rambling or it may be small and intimate, but chances are it probably contains a shed. Sheds are really useful structures, usually built out of wood, and used for all sorts of storage. Lawn mowers, hedge trimmers, spades, forks, seeds, pots, plant feed are the most conventional contents of a shed. But people use them for all sorts of reasons, not only for the garden. A shed may become a cinema with the addition of a large screen and a few comfy chairs; a vintage wardrobe with the addition of hangers, shelves and a mirror, or even as a ‘man cave’ where dad (or mum) can have a few moments ‘me’ time pottering about away from the hurly-burly in the house. Some people have guest beds in sheds, or chickens, pigeons, or other feathered or furry friends. Shed of the Year has become a national obsession.

A shed may be located at the bottom of the garden, but bearing in mind its proximity to anything else it is worth considering whether it poses a fire risk, particularly in these days of such warm weather. Back-to-back gardens need special consideration as fires between properties can spread very quickly, simply via that tinder-box at the bottom of the garden – the lovely shed. There was a fire very recently in Wiltshire which spread to seven gardens, all via the sheds. Dry grass, hot sun, and a fire can be lethal. A barbecue or any sort of fire should never be lit near a shed. It’s a good idea to keep a large bucket of water near the barbecue too in case of an emergency, and … never leave a lit barbecue unattended, even if it looks as though it is out, make sure it is fully extinguished before you leave it to cool off before disposing of the cold contents safely the next day.

For all your fire safety needs including fire alarms, smoke alarms, extinguishers, fire blankets, fire risk assessments and fire safety training for your staff contact our specialist staff at Bath & West Fire & Safety.

Landlord Jailed after Tragic Deaths

A landlord who failed to fit working smoke alarms in a rented property has been jailed in a landmark case after two young boys died in a fire.

Kamal Bains from Sheffield was told that his negligence in failing to install smoke detectors at the property in Huddersfield, Yorkshire was a ‘significant cause’ of the deaths of 3 year old Logan Taylor, and toddler Jake Casey.

The boys died when an electrical fault in a TV caused a fire in their bedroom in February 2016. Their mother Emma Taylor was beaten back by heat as she tried to rescue them Leeds Crown Court heard.

Bains, whose property company managed the house, admitted a breach of Health & Safety law in July in a case believed to be the first of its kind.

West Yorkshire Police said the prosecution was the first to be brought since legislation was passed in October 2015 which requires private sector landlords to have at least one smoke alarm installed on every storey of their properties.

Bains had been on trial for manslaughter, but the charges were dropped after he admitted the health and safety violations.

Sentencing him on Wednesday, Judge Mr Justice Males, told him: “Your failure to fit smoke alarms was a significant cause of the children’s deaths.
“The harm caused by your failure could not have been more serious.”

The boys’ mother told the two-week trial, which ended when the manslaughter charges were dropped, that she asked Bains “time after time” to fit alarms at the house he managed.

This case is surely a stark and tragic reminder to landlords and letting agents that they have a duty to ensure all their properties are fully equipped with all adequate safety measures to ensure the safety of their tenants … and make sure that this never happens again.

For all your fire safety needs including fire alarms, smoke alarms, extinguishers, fire blankets, fire risk assessments and fire safety training for your staff contact our specialist staff at Bath & West Fire & Safety.