Safety advice if you are celebrating the Chinese New Year

Thu 15 Feb, 2018

Click here to see the Chinese and English version of the Fire Safety in the Home booklet

Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service wishes everyone taking part in Chinese New Year festivities a happy and safe celebration.

The Chinese year 4716 - the Year of the Dog - starts tomorrow, Friday 16 February. Community safety manager Phill Mould said: “The festivities are very special to our Chinese communities and often take place over a number of days.

“If you are celebrating Chinese New Year, remember it is easy to get distracted when the family are around, so be extra vigilant when cooking and remember not to leave candles unattended.

"Over the past three months we have been to 85 accidental house fires, with 65 - more than three-quarters of them - starting in the kitchen.”

Phill offered the following safety advice:

  • Make sure tealights and candles are placed in proper holders, and put them out when you leave the room.
  • Treat fireworks with great caution. Only buy fireworks which have the CE mark, and always read the instructions. The firework code is available here in Traditional Chinese and Simplified Chinese).
  • Be extremely careful if you are planning to launch Chinese lanterns. Don't use or light a Chinese lantern in windy conditions or if any part of it is damaged. They can rise to more than 1,000 feet, fly for up to 20 minutes and float for miles before landing. Think before you light!
  • Never leave cooking unattended. When cooking deep-fried food, dry it before you put it in the hot oil. Never fill the pan more than one third full of oil. If the oil starts to smoke, turn off the heat and leave the pan to cool. Never throw water over the pan.
  • Don't overload electrical sockets and adaptors. Use Electrical Safety First's Socket Overload Calculator to make sure you stay within the limits.
  • You should have a working smoke alarm on the ceiling of each level of your home, and test your alarms regularly. Firefighters will carry out a free safety check in your home, and fit free smoke alarms where necessary, if you book by ringing 01296 744477 or emailing

Read or download the Fire Safety in the Home booklet in Chinese and English.