It is common for elderly people to rely on their children and other caregivers for help as they age. Economic and medical problems are common worries and can sometimes be out of ones control. However, fire prevention and other hazards frequently associated with electrical objects around the house are frequently neglected.

Research shows that one million people over 75 live in houses that are not warm enough and are also in a state of disrepair. These houses can be very dangerous because they don’t meet basic modern day electrical safety standards

Adults over the age of 65 are on the finest chance of demise from fireplace and this hazard maintains to increase with age in step with the country wide health safety affiliation.

I encourage you to look around the homes of your aged loved ones for electrical safety issues and encourage them to follow the safety precaution below:

1. Cables: Cables need to be in good condition with no signs of any damage, cracking or splitting and ought to be enclosed in a PVC sheath. Cuts, damage or signs of excessive wear and tear mean that the lead or plug may need changing. Try as much as possible to avoid trailing cables across the ground or underneath carpets and rugs as this can be a trip hazard.

2. Be on the lookout for warning signs of any electrical trouble. Contact a certified electrician in case you examine problems with outlets or switches that are warm or make crackling, scorching, or humming noises, or in case you see flickering or dimming lighting.

3. If your home has old wiring that is more than 20 years old, they will need checking and replacing if necessary. Old electricity wiring may be damaged and requires a qualified electrician’s attention. The things to look out for are; damaged plugs and sockets, visible burn marks etc.

4. Install Ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) in regions in which energy is near a water supply, inclusive of within the kitchen and restroom. GFCIs are electrical safety devices that prevent deadly shocks by quickly shutting off power to a circuit if the energy flowing into the circuit differs even slightly from the amount returning.

5. Check the smoke alarm: Every property has to have a working smoke alarm and batteries ought to be changed each year. You could test the smoke alarm with the aid of urgent the ‘check’ button. If there’s no smoke alarm then contact your neighborhood fire and Rescue provider to come and look at it.

7. Join up to the priority register: Elderly people should ask their energy company to add them to the priority service register which means they will eligible for a tailored billing service, free meter readings and alternative facilities for cooking and heating if something is going wrong at any point.

In addition to the precautions above, make use of assistive technologies to reduce the electrical risks in the home.

Examples are:

  • Electrical blanket
  • Electrical appliances with simplified controls
  • Automatic switch off for electric cooker to prevent overheating

These are all safety measures you can put in place to make sure your home is in proper working condition. It is so important to make a safe environment for your loved ones, not matter what age they are.

Take one of our recent customers from Norwood for example. She lives on her own in a two bedroom apartment and she has a problem with her hip which means she is not able to move very quickly. She could see some smoke coming from the sheets in her room and noticed that her electric blanket was still on from the morning. Luckily she identified this quickly and gave her local electrician a call so he could go out and immediately fix the problem for her. She now has an electric blanket that keeps her very warm.