Get sweeping for Chimney Fire Safety Week

Chimney fire

Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service is calling on homeowners across the two counties to get their chimneys swept by an approved sweep.

HWFRS is supporting Chimney Fire Safety Week (4-10 September) as part of the Government’s Fire Kills campaign to call for homeowners to act responsibly.

Sweeping prevents damage and, in worse cases, household fires while lowering fuel costs, reducing harmful emissions and protecting the environment.

HWFRS has been called out to 1,264 chimney fires in Herefordshire and Worcestershire over the last 10 years.

Emma Roberts, HWFRS Head of Prevention, said: “Sweeping your chimney twice a year and using a quality-assured fuel are the key to prevention.

“Not only does this remove soot and tar deposits but it also gives sweeps the opportunity to check for any problems with the appliance, chimney or liner, keeping you and your family safe and warm this winter.

“A typical sweep only takes about 90 minutes and doesn’t make a mess.

“Professional chimney sweeps use modern methods and tools such as power-sweeping, CCTV and vacuums to ensure minimal disturbance for the homeowner.

“Customers don’t need to move all of their furniture out of the room.

“It’s also vital with rising energy bills that we aren’t tempted to tackle ‘fuel poverty’ by cutting costs in ways that could impact health or mental welfare, such as reducing heating, hot water, cooking or fridge contents.

“I’d also encourage everyone to keep an eye on elderly or vulnerable relatives and neighbours who may be particularly struggling.”

To keep you and your family safe from fire it is important to:

  • 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. However, should a fire start, working smoke alarms can give you the early warning. A fire plan can also ensure your family escape in a fire.
  • Have at least one smoke alarm on every floor 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?

For more information on maintaining your chimney and how it can help with fire prevention, please visit and

Anyone who thinks they might qualify for a free Home Fire Safety Visit can call the HWFRS Prevention team on 0800 032 1155.

People can complete a free online Home Fire Safety Check at