‘Fire Kills’ – A National Safety Campaign

‘Fire Kills’ is the national fire safety campaign run in partnership with Government and local fire and rescue authorities in England.


Fire Kills campaign works to drive down the number of fires and associated deaths and injuries. Did you know that over half of those who die in fires are aged 65 and over, and that winter is the peak time for fires in the home?

Those with impairments or mobility issues are particularly vulnerable due to the impact this has on their ability to escape should a fire in the home break out. This is why vulnerable older people are our main target audience. We also try to reach their family, friends, neighbours and carers to encourage them to help the people they love or care for be more fire safe.


The campaign’s primary messages are to have smoke alarms installed on every level of the home and ensure that they work by testing them monthly.

You are at least four times more likely to survive a fire if you have working smoke alarms.   Working smoke alarms can provide the wake-up call needed to enable people to escape or seek vital help. Research shows that smoke alarms are the most effective way of alerting people to a fire.

Smoke Alarms Save Lives

Some further simple steps to help keep older people fire safe:


  • Unplug appliances such as heaters and electric blankets when they’re not in use
  • Invest in vibrating smoke alarms for the hard of hearing
  • Look for electrical risks such as frayed wires and overloaded plugs to help reduce the risk in their home
  • If you are a carer, please be sure to close household doors at night and test their smoke alarms whenever you visit to help give them the vital extra time they need to escape in case of a fire


Fire Kills provide a number of really helpful leaflets on Gov.uk to keep older people and more vulnerable audiences fire safe including:



Mind the Gap-CFRS1-GT031013

The campaign uses various channels to promote these vital fire safety messages to vulnerable older audiences, including :


  1. National advertising always has a focus on older people, either through media selection or the emphasis of the advert itself.
  2. Radio and TV public safety broadcasts are aired on national and local television and radio. A suite of new radio broadcasts encouraging people to test for older people who might need help and to avoid fires caused by overloading sockets were launched recently and proved very popular with radio stations.
  3. Local fire and rescue authorities play a vital and effective role in the safety of older people in their homes.

Partnerships with relevant organisations and agencies who specifically work with older people, such as the UK Home Care Association, Carers UK and MyAgeingParent enable us to speak directly to older people and their carers.


We are always looking for ways to reach older people and those who care for them with our fire safety messages. Please help us get these lifesaving massages out to those who need them this winter by adding them to your webpages, online resources or newsletters, or get in touch with James Webb at james.webb@communities.gsi.gov.uk to discuss partnership opportunitiesFit Smoke AlarmsTest ItPlan an Escape RouteKeep Heaters Away from FabricClose Inside Doors at Night

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