Warning following electric blanket fire
The occupants at the address had noticed a burning smell in the bedroom and so had closed the door, evacuated the premises and called the Fire Service. Two fire crews from Ledbury attended, and firefighters in breathing apparatus extinguished the fire with one hose reel and one covering jet used. Positive pressure ventilation equipment was also used to help clear the smoke from the property.
A man was treated at the scene for possible smoke inhalation.
Station Commander Kevin Williams from HWFRS praised the occupants at the address, saying: "The occupants took exactly the right actions on discovering the fire, and we'd urge anyone facing a fire in their home to do just the same – to get out, stay out and call 999, this way avoiding any further risk."
He confirmed that the fire had been caused by a faulty control switch on an electrical blanket being used on the bed, and that the blanket, the mattress and a bedside cabinet nearby had all been damaged by fire.
He added: "Thankfully there were no serious injuries and damage was confined to the bedroom where the fire broke out. In the light of this incident, however, we would remind all electric blanket users to take a few moments to inspect their own blankets."
He advised them to check for signs of wear and tear to their blanket, particularly any worn leads, scorch marks or creasing and folding, and to discontinue use if they have any concerns. Electric blankets should be safety checked every two years and replaced every 10 years. The Service offers free electric blanket safety testing sessions across the two counties and the next round of these will start later in the year – the dates of these will be advertised locally and posted online here as they are arranged.