Fire chiefs are urging householders in Aberdeenshire to stay safe this winter.
The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) wants people to Join Scotland’s Fight Against Fire and is appealing to the public to take steps to reduce the number of preventable blazes.
Firefighters are called to more road accidents on icy roads, flooding and fires during the winter months.
The cold weather also means people spend more time at home. Combined with increased use of heating and electrical appliances plus higher alcohol consumption during the festive season, there are more house fires in December and January than at any other time of year.
SFRS is reminding people it is particularly important to look after vulnerable people, particularly the elderly.
Over the last five years three-quarters of preventable fire deaths in Scotland were people aged 50.
Local senior officer for Aberdeenshire and Moray David Rout said: “Historically we see a rise in emergency calls due to winter weather.
“I would urge the public to take action now and be prepared for whatever hazards might come in the next few weeks.
“This winter we will work closely with local communities and partner agencies to keep the wider Aberdeenshire and Moray area safe from fire and other emergencies - but as always, we need the public’s help to reduce the amount of preventable fires we might see in the coming months.”
For more advice about staying safe over the coming months visit www.readyscotland.org. If you or someone you know may be at risk from fire, get in touch now and arrange a free Home Fire Safety Visit by calling 0800 0731 999 or visiting www.firescotland.gov.uk/winter