As the chilly weather takes hold residents are being urged to ensure their chimneys are safe to use.
This safety warning follows an incident in Hastings yesterday (22nd February) at a property in High Street, Old Town.
East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service were sent to the property at 10.09pm to tackle a chimney fire.
Thankfully, no-one was injured.
However, in a bid to keep you and your family safe, steps need to be taken to ensure that your open fire is fit for use. A chimney should be swept regularly, in accordance with The National Association of Chimney Sweeps (NACS) guidelines.
A smoke alarm is the easiest way to alert you to the danger of fire, giving you time to escape.
They are cheap, easy to get hold of and easy to fit.
Chimney Fire Prevention Tips
- Ensure your chimney is swept regularly
- Chimneys should be swept according to the type of fuel used:
- Smokeless fuels - at least once a year
- Bitumous coal - at least twice a year
- Wood - quarterly when in use
- Oil once a year
- Gas - once a year (Any work on gas appliances requires a Gas Safe registered installer/engineer)
- Keep chimneys and flues clean and well maintained
- Be careful when using open fires to keep warm. Make sure you always use a fire guard to protect against flying sparks from hot embers
- Ensure the fire is extinguished before going to bed or leaving the house
- Ensure good quality fuel is used
- Never interrupt the air supply by blocking air vents or air bricks
Precautions with open fires
- Do not overfill a fire grate in case coals fall out.
- Use a spark guard.
- Do not place a mirror above a fire, people may stand to close.
- Do not position furniture too close to the fire.
For further information please visit our community safety pages.
In the event of a fire get out, stay out and call the fire service out.