Fire Prevention in your Static Caravan
Fire prevention in your static caravan may not top of your list when you’re relaxing on holiday or a weekend break. However, fire can spread quickly and be devastating so it is good to know you have taken reasonable precautions to minimise the risk of fire and to ensure your safety should the worst occur.
Below is some suggestions that you may find helpful to assist in keeping yourself and your loved ones safe in your static caravan.
There are many ways that you can manage your static caravan to make fire less likely.
- Gas and electric safety – Make sure all your static caravan’s gas and electric appliances are checked each year by a registered Gas Safe engineer and replace any appliances where necessary.
- Don’t overload plug sockets and make sure cables aren’t tightly packed so they don’t overheat.
- Don’t leave your pans on the hob unattended and keep matches and lighters out of reach of children
- Avoid smoking inside your static caravan
- If you have a log burner or stove in your static caravan, make sure you don’t have flammable materials near your stove and if you’re looking to install, one use a HETAS qualified engineer. Make sure it’s placed on a hearth that meets building regulations.
- Do not put clothing or towels over electric heaters.
- Make sure all air vents are kept clear.
- Switch off heaters, cooking appliances and other electrical items before going to bed or when leaving your holiday caravan.
- Keep gas cylinders outside the caravan and if you suspect there’s a gas leak inside, turn off all appliances and the main cylinder valve. Open all windows, and contact your site manager to get it checked out, or a gas engineer. When changing cylinders, make sure all cylinder valves are turned off before disconnecting.
- Gas or other fuel cylinders should be held secure with quick release straps.
- Be careful using barbecues, camping stoves or patio heaters outside your holiday caravan, particularly on decked areas. Never take these inside your caravan or place them too near the sides, or leave them unattended.
- Finally ensure that all windows and other exits are working properly, should you need to escape.
- Install a smoke alarm and a carbon monoxide detector.
- Check that these are working regularly, change batteries or the whole unit if necessary, particularly when returning to your static caravan after time away.
Response to a Fire in your Static Caravan
Should the worst happen and fire breaks out, have a plan.
- Keep a 1kg dry powder fire extinguisher in your static caravan at all times. Familiarise yourself with how to use it because if you do need to, this may save you precious seconds.
- It is worth investing in a fire blanket and keeping it near the cooker, in case of oil fires. Again, familiarise yourself with how to use it. Never use a dry powder fire extinguisher or water to put out an oil fire in a pan on the hob. Your first response should be to switch the cooker off if it is safe for you to do so.
- If fire is spreading or is too large for you to deal with, exit your static caravan immediately, ensuring all occupants do the same.
- Call the fire service.
- Know where the nearest fire hydrant or water supply is, so you can save the fire service valuable seconds locating it.
- Make sure you know if and where there is a telephone on site, in case mobile phones get left behind.
- If it is safe to do so, disconnect the main electricity supply.
- If it is safe to do so, disconnect and remove fuel cylinders outside your static caravan and move them a safe distance away. Six metres is recommended but you may have to go further depending on the fire.
- Once everyone is safely out, never re-enter your static caravan when there is a fire.
- Inform your neighbours quickly and the site manager as soon as possible.
We hope that this information is helpful but always remember to refer to your schedule of insurance as there may be things that you must do to remain insured under your policy. We hope you will be able to enjoy your static caravan to the full and feel safe when you are there.
For information about insurance for static caravans, leisure homes, holiday lodges and holiday homes call our Northampton office and speak to one of our specialist insurance advisers on freephone 0800 988 0890.