Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service is encouraging residents to check on elderly and vulnerable relatives, friends and neighbours where possible to make sure they’re warm enough and have everything they need following the heavy snowfall across Staffordshire over the last few days.
"It’s the little things that count when supporting neighbours or friends and often just a small gesture of help can go a long way."
Head of Risk Reduction, Glynn Luznyj
Head of Risk Reduction, Glynn Luznyj said: “The older members of our community are the most vulnerable in this weather and we want to raise awareness of the issues an older person may face.
“It’s important that older people are keeping warm and are doing so safely. This means using fire guards, not having heaters too close to combustible materials such as furniture and clothing, not leaving heating appliances, including electric blankets, turned on overnight or unattended. We’ve sadly seen too many fatal fires involving elderly people over the last few years where some form of heating method or appliance was to blame.
“We’d also encourage residents to help elderly people with testing their smoke alarms, as it may be that they’re unable to do it themselves, but a working smoke alarm could just save their life.
“We want to prevent any serious incidents involving older people this winter. We work closely with partner agencies to do all that we can, we’d like to encourage Staffordshire residents to look out for the older members of their community as well. You could just save a life.”
“It isn’t just fire which is a risk for older people; slips trips and falls are a common cause for injury for this age group particularly when snow and Ice is present. If you’re clearing your own drive and pathways from snow and ice and you have an elderly neighbour, why not offer to do theirs as well? Or if you need to pop to the shop, why not see if an elderly neighbour needs anything on your way? It’s the little things that count when supporting neighbours or friends and often just a small gesture of help can go a long way.”
Residents are encouraged to keep up-to-date with the latest weather information by monitoring the websites and social media pages of the MET Office, as well as listening to the travel news on local radio stations. Winter home safety and driving safety information is also available from the Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service website and social media pages.