As winter approaches, Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service (WFRS) are urging homeowners to get their chimney swept by a registered chimney sweep.
By raising awareness of safe chimney use, including the need to ensure that chimneys are swept regularly, kept clean and appropriate quality fuel is used, WFRS aim to reduce chimney fires across the county.
In the last three years Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service have attended 112 chimney fires with the majority occurring in the autumn and winter months between October and March.
Warwickshire County Council’s Portfolio Holder for Fire and Rescue and Community Safety, Andy Crump said:
“With the colder weather on its way, we know that more people will be turning to their fireplaces to stay warm. However, before the fire is lit, I would encourage homeowners to have their chimney swept to ensure they’re free from debris and in full working order. A blocked or defective chimney can cause both chimney fires and carbon monoxide poisoning, so it’s very important to employ a professional qualified Chimney Sweep.
“Should a fire start unexpectedly, a working smoke alarm can give you an early warning of the danger and a fire plan can also ensure people inside the affected building can escape the fire. Remember get out, stay out and call 999.”
Residents are advised to have at least one smoke alarm on every floor of their home and a carbon monoxide detector in every room with a gas or fuelled appliance such as a boiler or gas fire. Carbon Monoxide detectors can reveal deadly gas build-ups from heating and cooking appliances fuelled by coal, wood, oil or gas if they are faulty, have been poorly installed or fallen into disrepair.
If you have any concerns regarding chimney fire safety visit https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/fire-safety-home/chimney-fire-safety-advice
For fire safety in the home visit https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/fire-safety-home