News » Archived News 2009

Community Safety Seminar for Older People “Feeling Safe in Your Home”

On Friday 10th April 2009 the Lord Mayor Cllr. Brian Bermingham, was present to open a  Community Safety Seminar for Older People organised by Sgt. Trevor Laffan and the Community Policing Unit, Anglesea St. Garda  Station. The event was held in the Millennium Hall, City Hall, Cork.


Contributers to the Safety Seminar pictured in the Millennium Hall, City Hall, Cork. Left to Right. Sgt. Trevor Laffan, Pat Doyle, National Guild of Master Craftsmen, Gus Connolly, ESB, Trish Tivy, Citizens Information Centre, Lord Mayor Cllr. Brian Bermingham, Billa O’Connell M.C., Brendan O'Donoghue, Cork City Fire Service, Liam Nolan, Bord Gais, Sgt. Tony Davis, Crime Prevention Officer.

Main Points of Garda Presentation:

Bogus Traders / Callers:

  • Employing Door to Door traders/ Repair people/contractors
  • Little work with exorbitant sums
  • Defined criminal offences committed, criminal damage, deception to demanding money with menaces
  • When caught can be prosecuted

There are broadly four ways these crimes can be committed:

  • Poor Work/Excessive Charges- or no work done
  • Bogus V.A.T.Charges
  • Opportunity Thefts
  • Deposit Thefts
  • Different members of same gang may return posing as V.A.T or Revenue Officials and demand money for work already performed and seek further payments.

How To Prevent This Type of Crime:

  • Tell callers you don’t employ cold callers, ask for brochure and you can verify, check telephone number, known address
  • Be careful if only mobile number, directory enquiries
  • If satisfied and work needs to be done, get quotation written, check previous work.
  • Verify everything.
  • Seek comparable quotes by established companies
  • Don’t engage if insist on cash payment, use method that can be traced
  • Never leave strangers into your home unsupervised

If you think that you have been a victim:

  •  Don’t be embarrassed or ashamed, contact local Gardai
  • Write down details of people involved, descriptions, transport, receipts etc. Keep safe
  • Most important be a good neighbour and advise any vulnerable people in your community, never hesitate to contact An Garda Siochana


Main Points of Fire Safety Presentation:

Pre Fire Factors

  • Smoking
  • Unattended cooking
  • Electrical Faults
  • Poor Maintenance/Housekeeping
  • Carelessness (Candles etc.)
  • Children playing with fire
  • Open Fires
  • Chimney Fires
  • Fire Prevention
  • Matches and lighters*
  • Chip Pans*
  • Electric Blankets - check for wear
  • Overloaded sockets/frayed wires
  • Chimneys should be cleaned regularly
  • Open Fires - Use Spark Guards/Fire Guards*
  • Flammables near fires/heaters*
  • Unplug/switch off non essential appliances*
  • Ashtrays - Smoking in bed*
  • Use electricians to install electrical appliances

Night Time Safety Routine


  • Maintain Escape Routes*
  • Procedures/Plan
  • Regular Drills
  • Assembly Points
  • Close all Doors*
  • Keys available in Doors where needed*
  • Refuges

Main Points of Gas Presentation:

When you smell gas:

  • Don’t smoke or use a naked flame
  • Don’t unplug or switch anything electrical ON or OFF
  • doorbell, switches or appliances
  • Open doors and windows to let the gas disperse
  • Ensure gas appliances haven’t been left on and unlit

Carbon Monoxide

  • Carbon Monoxide is a colourless, odourless and poisonous gas
  • It can It can be produced by any appliance which burns a fossil fuel such as gas, coal or oil.
  • If a person is exposed to Carbon Monoxide over time it can cause illness, even death.
  • In normal conditions the combustion process will cause the carbon in the fossil fuel to combine with oxygen in the air to produce Carbon Dioxide (CO2), the same substance we exhale when we breathe.
  • However, if there is a lack of air for the combustion process, or the appliance is faulty, Carbon Monoxide (CO) can be produced.

Main Points of ESB Presentation:

Kitchen Safety:

  • Have faulty appliances repaired by a professional
  • Don't leave any flex/lead trailing across the cooker, hob or sink
  • Never leave chip pans or deep fat fryers unattended
  • Only buy kitchen appliances (or any electrical appliances), that carry the CE approval mark
  • Let steam appliances (kettles, irons) cool down before refilling with water
  • Fit smoke alarms in your home (at least one in your hall or landing) and test regularly
  • Remember to replace their batteries twice a year
  • Leave a low energy light on overnight in the hall/stairs area to avoid accidents
  • Consider installing emergency lighting in case of a fire or power outage

Take extra care when you use electricity outside, in your garden or for DIY projects:

  • Make sure all sockets supplying electricity to power tools or outdoor appliances are protected by a residual current device (RCD).
  • This is usually fitted at your distribution board (fuse board), but RCDs are also available as plug-in devices.
  • Always follow the manufacturers' guidelines when using electrical equipment. Never use electrical equipment in the rain or in wet conditions

Audience listening to Liam Nolan, Bord Gais.


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