Faulty wiring and plugs are the most common cause of electrical fires in homes on Merseyside.

Washing machines, tumble dryers and dishwashers, are the next most frequent cause of electrical fires.

New figures have been released in advance of Electrical Fire Safety Week, which takes place from Monday, September 24 to Sunday, September 30.

Since January 2009 there have been 214 electrical fires after faults involving cables, wiring and plugs in Merseyside homes. During that period there were also 77 electrical fires involving washing machines, 73 involving a tumble dryers and 43 involving a dishwasher.

There have been 4,563 accidental fires in homes in Merseyside since January 2009 and 761 of them were caused by an electrical fault. Of those electrical fires, 108 involved the consumer unit.

Area Manager Myles Platt, from Merseyside fire & Rescue Service’s Prevention and Protection department, said: “The largest proportion of electrical fires in people’s homes is the result of cabling, wiring and plugs.

“We would always advise that people make sure they have a qualified and accredited electrician to do work on their homes.

“We would also advise people not to clutter the area in and around electrical consumer units as this could cause a fire to develop more rapidly.

“As part of Electrical Fire Safety Week we are urging people to take steps to protect their home from electrical fires in the home.”

A ‘Be a Hero’ campaign to raise awareness about the importance of kitchen safety has been launched by Fire Kills as part of Electrical Fire Safety Week.

Simple advice to help protect the home against electrical fires:
• Don’t overload plug sockets.
• Regularly check for worn or frayed wires.
• Unplug appliances after use.
• Keep appliances clean and in good working order.
• Don’t leave washing machines and dishwashers on while out of the house or overnight.
• Defrost the fridge freezer at least once a year.
• Check that the cooker is turned off after use.

For more information visit http://www.esc.org.uk/public/safety-in-the-home/fire-safety/electrical-fire-safety-week/

Fire Kills is a campaign initiative run by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG).

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