London Fire Brigade

Smoke alarms are not a luxury you can live without

31 August 2010

Despite a new survey revealing that we blow £13.2 billion each year on personal grooming products like hair gels, takeaways and perfume, hundreds of thousands of London households still don’t want to fork out for a smoke alarm that could save their lives.

Smoke alarms cost as little as £5 yet it is estimated that over 300,000 homes in the capital still do not have one. This is even more shocking in light of Mintel’s British lifestyle survey saying that people are spending £36 million a day on personal care. It also reveals that we spent £31 billion a year on takeaways and £2.4 billion feeding and clothing our pets.

London Fire Brigade’s own statistics show that in 2009 26 people died in fires where there was no working smoke alarm. 

Assistant Commissioner for fire safety Andy Hickmott said: “Buying a smoke alarm and making sure the batteries are working should be your priority when it comes to personal care. It is shocking that we are still attending a lot of fires where the residents have no smoke alarms. Spending as little as a fiver on a smoke alarm will save your life.”

Notes for editors

London’s firefighters attended 28,649 fires last year.

Figures are taken from Mintel, a leading market research company’s British Lifestyles Report -