Be honest now - do you have a fire blanket in your house? Or a fire extinguisher? Or a proper first aid kit? Smoke detectors? I bet you like most people here in the UK may have a smoke detector and perhaps a plastic box with a few plasters which you call a first aid kit, but not many of us will have a fire extinguisher or fire blanket in the home.
I carry all except the smoke detector with me when I am out doing my cooking demos, firstly because the law tells me that in a public place I must conform to stringent fire regulations and secondly because I like to be safe in the knowledge that I have the necessary equipment should such an emergency arise. Yet I throw caution to the wind when I am at home in my own kitchen and neither have a fire extinguisher or fire blanket on hand, yet that is where the majority of house fires start - think chip pans. It got me thinking why would I do that when in my work it is an absolute necessity and it's the first thing I get out when I am setting up for a demo?
The penny having finally dropped, I was discussing this fact with my wife later on and we both agreed that in a domestic situation not enough emphasis is put on the possible dangers that could befall any of us - or none that we choose to take any notice of. Her point was why would she want a great big ugly red and black fire blanket stuck to the kitchen wall? Lifesaving maybe but certainly not pretty.
Looking back, it really isn't that long ago that installing a smoke detector was a bind and even if we did have one, we failed to check the batteries as often as we should - but now as a matter of course we are all happy to have one stuck to the ceiling. We all know there is no smoke without fire and that fire may well start in a frying pan left unattended. So how do you start to put that out without endangering yourself or others? Your smoke alarm will be deafening you whilst your kitchen is getting scorched so what is so difficult about reaching for a fire blanket hanging on the back of a door to smother that potential house fire immediately?
So along comes a Finnish company called Safe With Me who combine Scandanavian design with state of the art safety equipment. Their strap line is Safe Does Not Equal Ugly. They supply safety products for the home that meet very stringent laws and regulations. The blankets themselves are tested against/conform to EN 1869:1997 standard and ASTM standard and are tested twice a year so you can be safe in the knowledge they are top notch products.
Their range of fire blankets are small and neat, no bigger that an A4 envelope, housed in a wipeable cotton vinyl bag with a built in eyelet so it can be hung up, in a wide choice of designs to suit every kitchen. Think of it as a VERY useful fashion accessory, as common as having matching tea towels! It doesn't have to be hung in full view like a Picasso masterpiece, it can be somewhere visible but discreet, where you can get to it quickly and easily should an emergency arise. Even the inside of the kitchen cupboard would suffice though it would be a shame not to have it on show, as there are such fantastic designs available. In fact, could well replace your tired old Picasso masterpiece.......
Safewith.me haven't reinvented the wheel but they have made the wheel more current, more acceptable and aesthetically more pleasing on the eye. And there's more from this innovative and forward thinking company - smoke detectors that fit to the ceiling and may well draw your eye - but for all the right reasons as these too are modern and current - so no excuse for "forgetting" to change the batteries now and again!
Having had my mind focussed on protecting my family and home - having my smoke detector in full working order to warn me of danger and my fire blanket at hand to quell any flames - it has made me realise that ensuring we have these items in the home are as important as getting in the car and fastening your seat belt. They take up little room, look good and give you peace of mind. And if you have a caravan, motorhome, boat or go camping, don't forget to pack your fire blanket and take it with you as fires can as easily happen away as at home too. No scaremongering, just plain common sense. It has certainly made me think.
To see for yourself how these products work go to the Safe With Me/Usage on their website, where you will find a series of videos explaining how to use your fire blanket. Well worth watching.
For more information regarding these great products and to see the designs on offer and to purchase your own, simply visit Safe With Me or find them on facebook.com/safewithmeofficial/