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Garden bonfire warning

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The warning comes after a bonfire in a garden in Morton Road in the Fernhill Heath area of Worcester yesterday afternoon (Wednesday 27 July) got out of control and spread to several neighbouring gardens, damaging fencing and sheds.

H&WFRS received the first of 14 calls about the incident at around 2.10pm, and two fire appliances from Worcester and one from Droitwich attended. Firefighters used two hose reel jets and two main jets to tackle the blaze, bringing it under control by 3.45pm.

Station Commander Dean Baker from H&WFRS said: "The bonfire had been lit near some conifer trees which, due to the dry conditions and the breeze on the day, quickly caught light. The fire then spread along the row of conifers into six neighbouring gardens, destroying fencing and a total of eight sheds and outbuildings.

"Thankfully no one was injured but we want to use this incident to highlight our garden bonfire advice."

H&WFRS recommends:

  • Locate your bonfire well clear of buildings, garden sheds, fences and hedges
  • Avoid burning garden waste when it's windy as the bonfire can easily get out of control
  • Never use a flammable liquid to start the fire, and never burn aerosol cans, paint tins, batteries, tyres or foam-filled furniture
  • Keep a bucket of water or a hose nearby as a safety precaution
  • Before lighting the fire, check there are no animals hiding or children playing in it
  • Never leave the bonfire unattended. An adult should supervise it at all times, with children kept a safe distance away
  • Use plenty of water if you need to damp the fire down

Station Commander Baker also reminded people not to risk injury by tackling an out-of-control bonfire themselves, but instead to call the Fire Service and wait for firefighters, who are trained to deal with these type of incidents, to arrive.