News release text
An overheated flue pipe accidentally started a house fire in Canterbury just before 10.30pm last night (Tuesday).
It is believed that the homeowner, a man thought to be in his 60’s, was alerted to the blaze by his working smoke alarm and after attempting to tackle the fire himself, phoned the fire service. Two fire engines from Canterbury were sent to the two-storey house in Sweechgate, Broad Oak.
Canterbury Watch Manager, Chris Redmond said: “The man had pulled up some flooring and thought he’d managed to put the fire out. Unfortunately, it had clearly been burning for some time and had spread to both floors of the house.”
The fire is thought to have been caused by inadequate insulation around the log burning flue, which overheated, catching fire to adjoining chipboard flooring and floor joists.
Firefighters in breathing apparatus used a thermal imaging camera to check for fire spread and a hose reel to put the blaze out. They spent approximately two hours, cutting away flooring, removing the shower unit in the bathroom to access the fire and assisting with salvage work.
Around 80 per cent of first floor bedroom where the fire started was damaged by fire and 100 per cent of the first floor was damaged by smoke.
Chris added: “Get in touch so we can give essential fire safety advice, tailored to your home, needs and lifestyle. It’s free of charge – even the phone call. Call us today on 0800 923 7000, or email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.saferwinter.info