MAWWFRS issue advice after Hay on Wye House Fire
This morning (10/02/2016) at 8.14am firefighters from Hay on Wye, Talgarth and Brecon attended a house fire in Clyro, Hay on Wye.
The fire originated in the chimney due to a build-up of soot. Firefighters extinguished the fire using Thermal Imaging Cameras, however there was extensive damage done to the property.
Firefighters remained on the scene until 10.47am.
Fortunately, nobody was injured in this instance, however Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service cannot convey strongly enough the potential dangers of chimney fires:
With most chimney fires preventable, please read these simple tips to greatly reduce your chances of having a fire in your chimney;
Sweep the chimney before use if you haven’t used it for some time.
Ensure a fireguard is in front of the fire at all times
NEVER use petrol or paraffin to light your fire.
How often should you clean your chimney?
Chimney fires have the potential to cause serious damage to your property so ensure your chimney is cleaned in accordance with this guidance from the National Association of Chimney Sweeps:-
Solid Fuel Appliances – once a year for smokeless fuel and twice a year for coal
Wood Burning Appliances – every three months when in use
Gas Appliances – once a year if designed for sweeping
Oil Fired Appliances – once a year
Do not be tempted to clean your chimney with a domestic vacuum cleaner, leave it to a proper chimney sweep. Have your flue inspected regularly to prevent fire breaking out of the chimney in a living space, or in the loft.
The National Association of Chimney Sweeps has a network of fully insured members throughout the Country, who work to a Code of Practice. For more details telephone free on 0800 833464 or visit their website on http://www.nacs.org.uk/
What should you do if you have a chimney fire?
- Raise the alarm in the house to let others know
- Dial 999 and ask for the Fire Service – we treat chimney fires like any fire in the home
- If you have a conventional open fire, extinguish the fire by gently splashing water onto the open fire
- If you have a solid fuel appliance, close down the ventilation as much as possible
- Move furniture and rugs away from the fireplace and remove any nearby ornaments
- Place a fire guard or spark guard in front of the fire
- Feel the chimney breast in other rooms for signs of heat
- If a wall is becoming hot, move furniture away.
Ensure that access to your attic or roof space is available for the Fire Service as they will want to thoroughly check this area for signs of possible fire spread.
Without proper maintenance, any flue from a fire or stove can cause a dangerous build-up of carbon monoxide gas.
A carbon monoxide detector will help protect you from this risk.
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