Home insurance claims for fire damage will soar by 70 per cent over Christmas as carefree merrymakers leave faulty fairy lights, candles and open fires unattended, Lloyds TSB Insurance warns.
Managing director Phil Loney describes fire risk as a "clear and present danger" this Christmas – when festivities and frantic preparation impair judgement, "most of us forget the basics of home safety".
His caution echoes the warning from the fire service in Scotland last week that Scottish people are at a 70 per cent higher risk of death in an accidental house fire over the Christmas season than at any other time.
The service is running a 'Don't Give Fire a Home' campaign, which highlights in particular the heightened safety risks incurred under the influence of alcohol.
"No festive season seems complete without a Christmas tree, fairy lights and decorations," Brian Sweeney, chief officer of Strathclyde Fire and Rescue, told BBC News.
"Yet all of these attractions pose a major fire risk, particularly to people who are enjoying their time off with a glass or two of alcohol," he warned. For more information about home insurance, click here.
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