Get sweeping for Chimney Fire Safety Week
With colder nights fast approaching, Chimney Fire Safety Week 2016 (5 –11 September) provides a timely reminder to make sure that your chimney is ready for the winter months ahead. As part of the national Fire Kills campaign, Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service (HWFRS) is urging householders to ensure their chimney is safe and to have their chimney swept by a registered chimney sweep.
Chimney fires accounted for over 5,000 incidents dealt with by fire and rescue services between April 2014 and March 2015. This year's Chimney Fire Safety Week calls for homeowners to clean up their act and get their chimneys swept by a registered sweep to prevent chimney damage, and, in worse cases, household fires.
- Always use a fire guard to protect against flying sparks from hot embers
- Make sure embers are properly put out before you go to bed
- Keep chimneys and flues clean and well maintained
Station Commander Alan Haley from HWFRS's Community Risk department said: "To keep you and your family safe from fire you should make sure you have your chimney swept regularly, depending on what fuel you burn, before the colder months set in and you begin to use your fire again".
"If the worst should happen, working smoke alarms can give you the early warning, and a fire-plan can help you ensure your family's escape in a fire – make sure you have at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home and test them weekly. Don't keep this advice to yourself – pass it on. Is there anyone you know who may need your help in organising a sweep or testing their alarms?"
Station Commander Haley continued: "A stove or open fire can be an ideal and pleasant way to keep warm in the winter, but without proper maintenance a chimney can become dangerous".
He urged people to make an appointment now with a registered chimney sweep if their chimney is due a clean. Further chimney safety advice and full details of chimney sweeps operating locally are listed on the Service's website at on the Home Safety page.
Community Risk Support Manager