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06-11-20

Fire safety advice to celebrate Diwali safely

 Diwali

During Diwali  - or the Festival of Lights - the National Fire Chiefs Council is asking communities to celebrate safely to avoid fire incidents.  The festival falls on Saturday 14 November and many of the organised events which usually take place have had to be cancelled due to the pandemic.

The festival is a very special time for many communities, but as people prepare to celebrate and worship at home, NFCC is asking everyone taking part to ensure they are following up-to-date fire safety advice. 

Ensure your home has working smoke alarms and they are regularly tested. Alarms should be installed in the rooms used most, as this is where a fire is most likely to start.  

Families should think twice about using fireworks at home. Home displays are not as safe as professionally organised displays;  if things go wrong, they can lead to lifechanging severe burns. In England and Wales between 2014-19 there were more than 1,00 severe firework injuries, 38% of these in children under 15 years old.

People who do use fireworks should make sure they are bought from an authorised retailer. All fireworks must carry a CE mark and have clear instructions on how they should be used. Read them carefully ahead of your display.

Check the safety distances on firework instructions and make sure there is enough space in gardens for them to be used safely. Depending on the firework, anywhere from 5 metres to 25 metres safety distance could be needed.

Sky lanterns not only cause litter, pollute and endanger wildlife – they are a real fire hazard. We ask that you do not use them. Many local authorities have banned their use.

When using candles and oil lamps make sure that hair is tied back and loose clothing is kept away from any naked flames. When using oil or ghee for your diva use only a small amount – enough to last your puja or prayers.  Keep candles and lamps well away from any idols, deities, decorations, curtains or furnishings so they don’t catch fire. Make sure they are on a stable surface, so they don’t tip over.

Please see advice in the act of workship from the Hindu Temple in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service 

  • Don’t leave naked flames even for a short time and make sure children are always supervised and never left with candles or oil lamps.
  • Put out any candles and lamps before you go to bed.
  • We advise people to consider using LED lights instead of naked flames to help you celebrate safely.

Families who are celebrating by cooking up a meal should take care in the kitchen. Don’t get distracted while cooking and keep children away from the kitchen. If you have long hair or loose clothing be careful when cooking. If clothing does catch fire you should ‘stop, drop and roll’ to put out the flames.

Stop-Drop-Roll

If you are deep frying food,  we suggest using a thermostatically controlled fryer. Make sure food is dry before you add it to hot oil as this will make sure it doesn’t spit and reduces the risk of burns.

If using oil to cook never fill the pan more than one third, if the oil smokes it’s too hot;   turn the heat down and allow it to cool. Never throw water onto hot oil and remember to check you have turned off cooking appliances when your food is ready.

Have a safe and happy Diwali!

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