Chinese New Year and fire safety

Parades, candles and lanterns as well as dancing dragons are synonymous with Chinese New Year. It is important that amongst all the festivities of this year’s celebrations to start the year of the dragon, fire safety is not forgotten.

Here are some important fire safety tips to ensure that you and your family stay safe this New Year.

Fireworks/flying lanterns
If you are enjoying fireworks always ensure that they carry the British Safety Standard 7114 mark. Treat them with respect and light them a good distance away from onlookers. Never light a firework that has been damaged and always follow the instructions.
Ensure that if you are setting off flying lanterns that the lighting of them is supervised and the release of them has been planned to avoid contact with trees.

Cooking should never be left unattended as it could quite easily get out of control and start a fire. Hot fat could combust and there is a risk of anyone in the house becoming overpowered with smoke before they have a chance to escape.

Candles should never be left unattended once lit. The flame should be placed away from flammable material like curtains or decorations. Make sure that you have put the candles out correctly before you leave the room and especially before you go to bed.

Early warning
Ensure that you have working smoke alarms, test them regularly and never take out the batteries of alarms. You should have an escape plan, talk this through with all family members especially small children.

This leaflet gives you advice and tips for your fire safety over the festive period. It is written in English and Chinese.

Stay safe this Chinese New Year!

The Chinese New Year begins on February 3, 2011 and this year it is the year of the rabbit. For many Chinese this is a time to celebrate the end of an old year and the beginning of a new one. With it comes the opportunity to meet and gather with family members for meals and to forget any past problems that they may have had with each other.

The Chinese traditionally wear red, the colour that symbolises fire, and have firework displays. The fireworks and red garments are believed to ward off evil. Candles may also be lit at this special time and the highlight of the celebration is the lantern parade on the fifteenth day. There is also a Dragon dance that usually takes place at the weekend. This is a spectacular display of dragons dancing through the streets accompanied by firecrackers.

When candles and fireworks are being used as well as lanterns with traditional candles with naked flames there is an element of fire risk. Ensure that you have adequate fire safety equipment and a burns kit at hand for any eventuality.

Safelincs would like to take this opportunity to wish all celebrating the Chinese New Year good health and happiness in the year of the rabbit.