If you live in North Wales, the local fire and rescue service is offering a free smoke alarm and installation service. They will also conduct a home fire safety check and assess whether vulnerable people need extra support.
Statistics show that individuals are six times more likely to die from a fire in the home if they do not have a smoke alarm.
The AM is urging every constituent without a smoke alarm to take up the offer.
Mr Skates said: “It is a tragedy that even today house fires still take the lives of far too many people. Yet with the right safety advice and by installing a smoke alarm, individuals and families can greatly increase their chances of surviving a fire if one occurs at their home.
“That’s why I’m urging every constituent who doesn’t have a smoke alarm fitted in their home to take up this offer and call North Wales Fire and Rescue Service to get one installed.
“The home fire safety visit they do takes about twenty minutes and can be arranged at your convenience. Fully trained fire and rescue service staff, who always carry an identification card, will help supply and install free home smoke detectors or ensure that your existing alarms are in good working order.
“They can also help provide advice on how to make your home safe from fire and assist you in preparing an escape plan to help you and your family make your way safely out of the property in the event of a fire starting.
“They can also help provide specialised equipment for deaf and hard of hearing people and assess whether you are at high risk and may benefit from specialist equipment to help keep you safe.
“I’d urge everyone to get one installed as soon as possible.”
All of the above is FREE of charge and can be arranged by:
· Filling in an online enquiry form at www.freesmokealarm.co.uk
· Calling 0800 169 1234 at any time of the day or night to register
· Texting 88365, prefixing the message with the word HFSC
Twelve top tips for fire safety at home:
1. Fit smoke detectors on each level in your home. Keep them free from dust and test them once a week. Consider buying a 10-year alarm, otherwise change the batteries every year.
2. Make a fire action plan so that everyone in your home knows how to escape if there's a fire.
3. Keep the exits from your home clear so that people can escape if there's a fire. Make sure that everyone in your home can easily find the keys for doors and windows.
4. Take extra care in the kitchen - accidents while cooking account for over half of fires in homes. Never leave young children alone in the kitchen.
5. Take extra care when cooking with hot oil. Consider buying a deep-fat fryer which is controlled by a thermostat (if you don't already have one).
6. Never leave lit candles in rooms that nobody is in or in rooms where children are on their own. Make sure candles are in secure holders on a surface that doesn't burn
7. Make sure cigarettes are stubbed out properly and are disposed of carefully, and never smoke in bed.
8. Get into the habit of closing doors at night. If you want to keep a child's bedroom door open, close the doors to the lounge and kitchen. This may well help save their life if there is a fire.
9. Don't overload electrical sockets. Remember one plug for one socket.
10. Keep matches and lighters where children can't see or reach them.
11. Take special care when you're tired or when you've been drinking.
12. Don't leave the TV or other electrical appliances on standby as this could cause a fire. Always switch them off and unplug when not in use.