Firefighters offer free home safety checks for dementia sufferers in South Yorkshire

Firefighters are urging people to arrange home safety checks for friends, relatives and neighours with dementia
Firefighters are urging people to arrange home safety checks for friends, relatives and neighours with dementia
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Firefighters in South Yorkshire are urging residents to check on their older relatives, friends and neighbours who may suffer from memory loss - in a bid to reduce the risk of a fire.

They issued their plea as part of Dementia Awareness Week, which ends today.

Firefighters are urging people to arrange home safety checks for friends, relatives and neighours with dementia

Firefighters are urging people to arrange home safety checks for friends, relatives and neighours with dementia

Fire chiefs are concerned that people suffering from dementia could be more at risk of a fire breaking out in their home.

They are offering free home safety checks for people with memory issues in a bid to draw attention to fire risks before it is too late.

To draw attention to their concerns firefighters have attended a number of events through the week, including dementia cafes and coffee mornings, where they have met older people and their relatives and offered advice about preventing fires.

The fire service is also training dozens of its own staff to become Dementia Friends - a Government backed initiative which teaches people what it’s like to live with dementia and then turns that understanding into action.

Vulnerable persons advocate Dianne Fox said: “People with memory loss issues can be more at risk of having a fire due to for example, forgetting that they have left a pan on the stove. “They may then become confused by the smoke alarm sounding and make the wrong decision about what to do, therefore putting themselves in danger.”

A fire service spokesman said: “We are committed to helping the most vulnerable people in our communities, of which people with dementia are one of our key target groups.

“An ageing population affects lots of public services, but through awareness raising work such as this and safety initiatives like our free home safety checks, as a fire service we are determined to do what we can to help older people continue to live healthy, fulfilling and independent lives.”

For more information or to book a check call 0114 253 2314.