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21 November 2014 - Preventable fires spark winter warning from firefighters

21 November 2014 - Preventable fires spark winter warning from firefighters

Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) is reminding households to be cautious of potential fire hazards as the weather cools down, following a house fire in Cranbrook last night, (Thursday, 20 November).

Fire crews were called to the blaze in Dorothy Avenue at around 7pm after a neighbour heard the smoke alarms sounding. They alerted the residents and KFRS.

When crews arrived, everyone was safely out of the property but smoke was billowing out of the house. Firefighters in breathing apparatus used a hose reel to extinguish the fire, which started after the homeowner left washing to dry on a clothes horse in front of a log burner. It radiated heat to the clothes, sparking a blaze.

Cranbrook Crew Manager, David Howell, said: “I cannot stress enough how vital it is to have working smoke alarms in your home. As we’ve seen at this incident, they can and do provide the vital early warning needed, allowing the family to escape safely.

“As the weather cools down and residents switch to alternative ways of drying clothes and heating their homes, they should always keep safety in mind and never put themselves at risk.

“Make sure your log burner is at least three feet away from items that could catch alight such as: clothing, curtains and furniture and never leave it unsupervised if you have children or pets in your home. Avoid clutter around the stove as embers can land on nearby items and spark a fire.”

Crews used a thermal imaging camera to check for hotspots under floorboards and gave the homeowner fire safety advice before leaving the property at around 8.15pm.

To get free home safety advice or to see if you qualify for a home safety visit please call 0800 923 7000 or email your contact details to home@kent.fire.uk.org

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