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Working with partners on No Smoking Day


North Wales Fire and Rescue Service is joining with partners at events across North Wales today, National No Smoking Day and urging smokers to realise the potentially deadly dangers of lighting up in the home.

From the 1st of April 2012 to date, we were called to 75 fires caused by smoking materials - 47 of those in the last 11 months. These incidents resulted in two fatalities and 19 people being injured -11 people required hospital treatment for injuries and a further eight received first aid at the scene.

Smokers not giving up should still be aware of the fire risks they face, cut out dangerous habits, install smoke alarms on every level of the home and test them weekly. A working smoke alarm means you are more than twice as likely to survive an accidental house fire.

"Without an early alarm system in place you could lose valuable escape time in a fire," says Terry Williams, Head of Community Safety for North Wales Fire and Rescue Service.

"Just two to three breaths of toxic smoke can render a person unconscious.

"The damage caused by fires in the home, especially those caused by smoking materials is devastating. These types of fires can smoulder for hours and then spread rapidly and without warning into very serious fires.

"By using 'No Smoking Day' as an opportunity to stub out the habit for good, you will not only improve your health you will also reduce the risk of fire in your home.

"The best way to be sure of reducing your risk is to give up smoking - however, we appreciate for some smokers, kicking the habit can be extremely tough so our advice is to always be cautious when smoking at home and to put it out, right out after finishing a cigarette."

For smokers not ready to kick the habit this No Smoking Day, it is important to follow these simple precautions to prevent a fire at home:

- Put it out, right out! Make sure your cigarette is fully extinguished
- Fit a smoke alarm and test it weekly. A working smoke alarm can buy you valuable time to get out, stay out and call 999
- Never smoke in bed. Take care when you're tired. It's very easy to fall asleep while your cigarette is still burning and set furniture alight
- Avoid drugs and alcohol when smoking. It's easy to lose your concentration when using any sort of drugs or drinking alcohol, combined with cigarettes and this could be lethal
- Never leave lit cigarettes, cigars or pipes unattended - they can easily overbalance as they burn down
- Use a proper, heavy ashtray that can't tip over easily and is made of a material that won't burn.

North Wales Fire and Rescue Service offer free home fire safety checks, where a member of the Service will visit your home, give fire safety hints and tips, help you to formulate a fire escape plan and fit new alarms - all free of charge. This service is available to all residents in North Wales.

To register for a free home fire safety check, please call the 24 hour free hotline on 0800 169 1234, e-mail or visit

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