With the UK facing a cold snap this week (January 21st), no doubt many people are making good use of portable electric heaters to help themselves stay warm. However, managers of care homes and any other such businesses where these appliances are likely to be used heavily must make sure that appropriate safety guidelines are adhered to.
Figures from Electrical Safety First from 2014 show that these products have caused more than 3,800 fires, approximately 1,000 injuries and 73 deaths since 2009-2010, so it’s vital that those using them know how to do so safely.
Each winter, care home managers should ensure that they check their heaters are in good working order and that they don’t pose a health risk. You can do this yourself if you decide to go on a PAT testing training course where you’ll learn how to use the relevant equipment and what warning signs to look out for regarding wear and tear, and damage.
Aside from this, you can ensure your residents’ safety by making sure that no heaters are ever left unattended, that people aren’t using them while they’re asleep and that you never buy second-hand appliances.
In addition, you should make sure that they are kept well away from anything that could knock them over and that they’re positioned far from combustible materials like the curtains.
All it takes is a bit of planning and forethought, and you and those in your care home or nursing home will be able to make it all the way through to spring with no problems at all.