Fire safety

Taking the risk of fire seriously is very important to protect residents and communities.

Silva Homes works in close partnership with the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service (RBFRS), Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service (HFRS), and Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service (OFRS) to give advice about fire prevention and fire safety. Information leaflets have been sent to all our customers and fire prevention tips are regularly published in the Spotlight newsletter. More information is available by clicking here (RBFRS website)here (HFRS website) or here (OFRS).

Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service logo     Hampshire fire and Rescue Service logo

Fire prevention and safety

Information leaflets

Please click below for fire safety information leaflets (provided by Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue):

Communal halls

The estate services team carries out regular checks to reduce the risk of fires and advise residents of precautions to take. We check communal hallways for obstacles and items that may pose a fire risk, for example buggies and mobility scooters. We have a zero tolerance approach that nothing is left in communal hallways. This helps reduce fire risk and obstacles, and keeps the hallways neat and clear.

In the event of a fire in multi-occupancy buildings and blocks of flats

  • If the fire is in your flat, alert others in the flat, leave the flat immediately, close the door behind you and raise the alarm
  • If a fire starts in the common parts, anyone in these areas makes their way out of the building and summons the fire and rescue service
  • If the fire is elsewhere in the block: anyone in the communal areas can make their way out of the building and raise the alarm to the fire and rescue service. All other residents not directly affected by the fire would be expected to stay put and remain in their flat unless directed to leave by the fire and rescue service or until the fire brigade takes control of the situation and evacuates residents safely but if you feel you are at risk from fire, please feel free to self-evacuate using the main fire escape route or alternative balcony escape route
  • Please report any incidents to Silva Homes or in the case of emergency, call 999.

In the event of fire at single properties 

  • Plan your escape in the event of an emergency and ensure everyone living or staying in the property is aware
  • Any furniture should be fire retardant and meet the furniture regulations
  • Any highly flammable surfaces should be removed, for example flock wallpaper and polystyrene tiles 
  • The electric wiring system should be checked by an electrician at regular intervals and all sockets given a visual inspection for signs of burning or misuse
  • Avoid using extension leads and overloading sockets
  • If there are smokers in the house, ensure there are plenty of ashtrays and clean and dispose of the contents at the end of each day
  • Any open fires should be protected with fire guards and never dry washing on them
  • Be fire safe in the kitchen, for example, don't leave pans unattended.

Fire safety checks

The Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service also offer free home fire safety checks to help reduce the risk of fire. At a pre-arranged time, the RBFRS will visit your home to carry out a fire safety check, give you advice on what to do if there’s a fire and help you make an escape plan. They will also fit free smoke alarms where necessary. Please click here for more information and to book a free fire safety check (RBFRS website).

If you see a fire please call 999 and ask for the fire service.

Fire survival guide

Every year the fire brigade is called out to over 60,000 fires in the home. If a fire breaks out in your home, your chances of survival depend on how quickly and safely you are able to get out.

Planning your escape route from a single dwelling

If a fire occurs in your home, you may have to get out in dark and difficult conditions. Escaping from a fire will be a lot easier if you have already planned your escape route and know where to go. Make sure your planned escape route is free of any obstructions and there are no loose floor coverings that could be a trip hazard. Everyone in the house should be aware of the escape route.

If you have serious mobility difficulties you may wish to consider having your bedroom on the ground floor, if this is practical, and as near as possible to an exit. If you need assistance to make your escape, it is vital you have some means of summoning help by your bed, such as a buzzer, intercom or telephone.

There are also systems available which will automatically dial out on your telephone line to summon help or send a signal to a manned control room. Details of the many emergency call/alarm systems available can be obtained from the Disabled Living Foundation who produce a booklet on the subject.

Bedtime routine

Many fires in the home start at night. Make sure you have a bedtime fire safety routine to help keep you and your family safe. Here are a few simple things you should do every night:

  • Switch off and unplug all electrical appliances not designed to stay on. There are specially designed plugs available which can be very easily inserted and removed. Details of these devices are available from the Disabled Living Foundation
  • Make sure no cigarettes or pipes are still burning. Never smoke in bed
  • Before emptying ashtrays make sure the contents are cold
  • Switch off any portable heaters and electric blankets
  • Close the doors of all rooms.

Test it Tuesday

Stay safe and take the time to test your fire alarm on a regular basis.

Test your fire alarm regularly reminder Test it Tuesday









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Fire safety videos

Please watch the video below to see the devastating effect and speed which a fire can take hold.