Winter’s Chill Brings Increased Fire Risk


Fire and Rescue NSW indicate that cooler months see a 10% increase in the number of home fires, with more fires in bedrooms and living rooms due to heaters and electric blankets.

We are urging all to remain vigilant as the allure of using internal heaters to warm up an apartment remains ever enticing across the state. Due to the colder Winter months and the increased need for internal heating; fires remain a very real threat.

Fire and Rescue NSW  provide a heater and winter months safety fact sheet:

  • Check your electric and gas heaters before you use them. If you suspect a fault have the item checked by a qualified repairer or replace it. Check all cords for fraying and damage. Plug heaters directly into wall sockets only.
  • Do not overload powerboards.
  • Ensure everything is kept a metre from the heater.
  • Install any new heaters and use as per manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Check your portable outdoor heaters before use and have them serviced or replaced if required. Ensure that the area where you plan to use them is level, well ventilated and away from awnings and other combustible materials.
  • Always supervise young children in rooms with open fires or working heaters.
  • Never use wheat bags in bed.

Further, never use any outdoor heating or cooking equipment inside your home including those that use ‘heat beads’ or LPG as a fuel source. This type of equipment is not suitable for indoor use and can lead to a build-up of lethal gases which could be deadly. Always check the manufacturer’s recommendations before use.

We are urging all members to heed these safety recommendations and to take utmost care when heating their apartments, units or townhouses. Particularly in buildings identified as ‘at risk’ of flammable cladding.

ACP cladding remains a real cause for concern with internal heater usage skyrocketing in the Winter months. This is a risk which has the potential to impact the lives of tens of thousands of people in NSW.

There are still hundreds of buildings in NSW that have been identified as being at risk because of flammable cladding. The last thing we want to see is an injury or death, or major damage to a building caused by a catastrophic fire.

Please practise vigilance while heating your homes!