Mt Druitt - St Mary's Standard (East) - - LIFE STYLE - Janita Singh For in­for­ma­tion and safety tips go to fire.nsw.gov.au and fair­trad­ing.gov.au

WIN­TER is the worst time of the year for house fires.

Each year, Fire & Res­cue NSW at­tends about 4,500 res­i­den­tial fires, about 30 per cent of which oc­cur in win­ter.

Com­pla­cency is the big­gest killer, the ser­vice says.

To re­it­er­ate the mes­sage of fire safety, FRNSW is hold­ing its an­nual Open Day on Satur­day.

Sta­tion Of­fi­cer Jeremy Co­hen says that with win­ter al­most here, the day is a timely op­por­tu­nity for peo­ple to learn how they can keep their homes and fam­i­lies safe.

“Talk to our fire­fight­ers face-to­face about sim­ple safety tips you can use to en­sure you and your fam­ily es­cape a fire quickly and safely,” Co­hen says.

Fire sta­tions will be open from 10am to 2pm and of­fer a range of ac­tiv­i­ties, in­clud­ing fire­fight­ing demon­stra­tions, sta­tion tours and fire safety pre­sen­ta­tions.

NSW Fair Trad­ing Com­mis­sioner Rod Stowe is also urg­ing peo­ple to take care when buy­ing and us­ing heat­ing prod­ucts.

“If you haven’t used your heater for a while, make sure it is in good work­ing or­der,’’ Stowe says.

Com­mon sense goes a long way to pre­vent­ing house fires, he says.

“Bring­ing heaters in too close to bed­ding or cur­tains can cause fire ... be aware when us­ing heaters in an en­closed space and en­sure there is ad­e­quate ven­ti­la­tion,” he says, adding that out­door heaters should never be used in­doors.

“If you’ve folded and stored your elec­tric blan­ket over sum­mer, make sure the cords aren’t frayed and don’t leave it switched on unat­tended,” he says.

Win­ter fire warn­ing ... Fire & Res­cue NSW is hold­ing its an­nual Open Day on Satur­day to drive home the mes­sage of fire safety at home.

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