What should I do if there is a fire in my home?

What to do if there is a fire in a sheltered housing property or a flat within a purpose built block with a communal area


  • Stay in your home and close all doors behind you
  • Move towards a window, so that you can be seen from the outside
  • Get ready to be evacuated e.g. get dressed, collect walking sticks, house keys etc.
  • Wait for the Senior Fire Officer to decide when to evacuate the building. They will have a list of all the residents who need help
  •  Stay in your home until told that it is safe to leave, or you are told to evacuate
  • If you are in a communal area leave by the safest route and report to the assembly point
  • Stay at the assembly point until the Senior Fire Officer tells you what to do next.

Do not:

  • Use the lift
  • Let visitors through the communal door entry system unless they are emergency personnel needing to get into the building
  • Leave your home until told that it is safe to do so
  • Go out into the corridors to investigate
  • Block corridors, keep escape routes clear at all times

If there is a fire in your house, bungalow, maisonette or in a converted block of flats*

*Our converted blocks of flats are 31, 35 & 39 Parliament Street, 71 London Road and 1 Belgrave Road.

Do not tackle the fire yourself!


  • Keep calm and leave immediately, closing all doors behind you
  • Crawl out at ground level if smoke is making it difficult for you to breathe – smoke tends to rise and breathing should be easier the closer you are to the ground
  • Check doors before opening them, with the back of your hand. If it is warm, do not open it – there may be a fire on the other side
  • Raise the alarm by activating a fire alarm point if there is one. Alternatively dial 999, ask for the Fire and Rescue Service and tell them your location
  • Go to a place of safety outside and stay there until told what to do by the Senior Fire Officer on the scene.

Do not:

  • Waste time investigating what has happened or rescuing valuables.

If you are trapped by the fire or smoke

Try to take refuge in a room with a window or external door that isn’t affected by fire or smoke and make sure you close the door behind you to delay the fire. Place a wet piece of clothing or towel across the bottom of the door to prevent smoke getting in. If there is an exit door or window from the room, use it to escape. If you are on the first floor, throw something out of the window which will help to break your fall, such as a mattress or cushions, and then lower yourself by your arms from the window ledge before dropping.

Do Not Jump!

If there are 2 adults, 1 should go down first to catch children. The other should get into a secure position and then lower the children as far as possible down the outside wall before letting them drop.

If you are above first-floor level, or due to your age or health cannot get out of the window, open the window and draw attention to yourself by shouting and by waving sheets or clothes. Wait until the emergency services arrive to rescue you.

If your clothes catch fire Stop! Drop! And Roll!


  • Lie down and roll around. It makes it harder for it to spread and may put out some of the flames
  • Smother the flames with a heavy material, like a coat or blanket, it will help deprive the fire of oxygen which it needs to keep burning

Do not:

  • Run around, it will make the flames worse

How do I prevent fire in my home?

How do I reduce fire risk in a block?

What fire detection methods are there in my home?

For a free Home Fire Safety Check: visit www.glosfire.gov.uk or call 01452 888777