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Caravan Safety Advice

25th October 2011

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service attends several fires in caravans each year, sadly on several occasions these fires have led to fatalities.

Smoke alarms are not a legal requirement in all caravans and this means that people may chose not to fit them. We would urge anyone who either resides in a caravan or uses one for leisure (camping trips) to fit a smoke alarm- it could save your life.

  • Remember to test the batteries every week and never remove them, unless it's to replace them.
  • Smoke alarms should be located on the ceiling.
  • They should be at least 10cm away from the top of a wall, both vertically and horizontally.
  • Consider having a fire extinguisher and fire blanket near the exit as well.
  • You can now buy toast proof alarms which go off less often. These smoke detectors only operate when they see smoke, whereas previous detectors operated when they could smell anything that could be smoke. This dramatically reduces the chances of false alarms whilst still providing an early warning for you and your family to escape.

Caravans burn very quickly, and what starts out as a small fire can quickly escalate into something much bigger.

Follow the tips below to help stay safe:

  • Take special care when cooking – don’t leave pans unattended.
  • Turn off all appliances before you go out or to bed.
  • Make sure ashtrays are made of a material that can’t burn – and never smoke in bed.
  • Don’t dry clothes over the stove or on a heater.
  • Remove any litter and rubbish near the caravan to reduce the risk of fire spreading.
  • Make sure the caravan is ventilated, and never block air vents, to avoid a build up of poisonous gasses.


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