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Your Fire Safety

Our officers and firefighters are continually updating our information on risks within the county.

Everything you need to know to keep your home and your family safe from fire. 

Fire Safety At Home

Our aim is to make you safer in your home by providing safety services, advice and guidance.  The information we provide here will help reduce the chance of a fire starting in your home and will teach you how to react if the worst occurs.

Always remember:If fire BREAKS OUT - GET OUT, STAY OUT AND CALL 999.

Don't try to fight a fire yourself!

Is your Home Safe?

Each year, we are called to attend fires in homes in Westmeath.

Fire can take householders completely by surprise as it sweeps through homes destroying possessions and sometimes even life. And for the most part fires are preventable.

Safety in the home begins with a proper understanding of fire - how it starts and how to prevent it.
Did you know that a Smoke or Heat Alarm (465kB) costing less than €5 could save your life?

To find out ways of keeping you and your family safe download Fire Safety in the Home (446kB)  

Are You Prepared?

To ensure you are doing everything you can to prepare for every eventuality read this section.

You don't need to be an expert. Just think it through. How would you get everyone out at night? How would you get the kids out? How would granny cope? Planning an escape in the event of fire is essential wherever you are.  It doesn't take long to make an escape plan and it could save your life and the lives of those you love. Make a plan now and make sure everyone knows it and practises what to do. Click here to make your escape plan.


Every Week

  • Test your smoke alarm - fit a new battery or alarm if necessary
  • Review and practise your Fire Action Plan

Every Year

  • Replace batteries in smoke alarms with new batteries
  • Have any fire extinguishers you own checked and serviced

Bedtime Routine

Follow these simple routines and help protect your family, your home and yourself from fire.

Before you go to bed.

  • Switch off and unplug all electrical appliances not designed to be left on overnight (including washing machines and dishwashers)
  • Stub out all cigarettes and always empty ashtrays. Pour water over cigarette ends before putting them in the bin outside
  • Put fireguards around open fires. Don't build up the fire before you go to bed.
  • Switch off portable heaters
  • Close all doors, it can keep your escape route free from smoke and may stop a fire spreading
  • Make sure the main door keys are to hand
  • Check your escape routes are clear of obstructions

10 Commandments to Fire Safety

  • Make your ESCAPE plan now
  • PRACTISE your escape route with your family
  • DON'T STOP for valuables
  • SHOUT to alert your family
  • KEEP LOW - air is clearer and cooler near the floor
  • DON'T INVESTIGATE - keep doors closed
  • If there's no safe way out, get everyone into a SAFE ROOM
  • Never jump out of a window. You may be able to LOWER yourself onto pillows and cushions. But only ever attempt this as a last resort
  • If you BREAK a window, cover jagged edges before climbing out

Escape Plan

Questions to Think About

  • Who's usually in the property?
  • How will they know if there's a fire?
  • If there are children who will help them? 
  • If there are elderly people, who will raise the alarm to them and help them? 
  • If there are people who can't see, hear or move around easily, who will help them?


  • Fire is fast – you have no time
  • Fire is dark – you can’t see
  • Fire is hot – you can’t breathe
  • If fire starts, shout to warn everyone in the house 
  • Get everyone out as quickly as you can. Don't stop for valuables. A life is worth more than the most valuable thing you own. 
  • Don't look for the fire. If you can, close the door of the room where the fire is to give you more time to get out.
  • Keep low down air is cleaner and cooler nearer the floor 
  • Practise with your family

Plan A

  • The first choice route of escape is always through the main door, and you should always close it once everyone is out.
  • Get everyone out as quickly as you can. Don't stop for valuables. A life is worth more than the most valuable thing you own.
  • Don't look for the fire. If you can, close the door of the room where the fire is to give you more time to get out.
  • Then call the Fire Brigade

Plan B

  • If it's not safe to leave by the main door, how else could you escape?
  • Is there another door you could use or a fire escape? 
  • Could you climb out of a ground floor window? 
  • Could you climb out of a first floor window onto a garage roof or extension and get down safely?

What if you can’t get out

If Plan A and B aren't safe, you'll need to shelter somewhere:

  • Choose a room with a phone and a window that opens.
  • Get everyone into one room. If possible, make it a room with a phone. This is your 'safe' room. But never open the door to a room if it's warm to touch.
  • When everyone's in the room, pack clothes, cushions, pillows or towels around the door to keep smoke out 
  • Open a window and shout until someone calls the Fire & Rescue Service. Stay at the open window
  • If you're on the first floor, you might be able to drop some pillows or cushions and then lower yourself from the windowsill. But only ever attempt this as a last resort
  • If there are two adults, one should go first to catch children. Pass them slowly and stretch full length before you let them go
  • No-one should ever jump
  • If you're on a higher floor, lean out of the window for fresh air until the fire-fighters arrive
  • Plan your escape route now