Keep Your Chimney Safe This Autumn and Winter 

 

Top tips to enjoy an open fire safely:

·         Keep chimneys and flues clean and well maintained

·         Always use a fire guard to protect against flying sparks from hot embers

·         Make sure embers are properly put out  before you go to bed

Andy Martin, Community Fire Safety Officer, explains: “All chimneys and flues should be cleaned and checked after the summer months to ensure they’re free from debris and in full working order before lighting any fires in the colder weather. A blocked or defective chimney or flue can cause both chimney/flue fires and carbon monoxide poisoning so it is very important to get them swept by a professional qualified Chimney Sweep.”

 

A stove or open fire can be an ideal and pleasant way to keep warm in the winter, but without proper maintenance a chimney or flue can become dangerous.  Latest statistics show that there are over 5,000 chimney fires a year in England, but most of these are preventable.

“If the worst should happen, working smoke alarms can give you the early warning, and a fire-plan can help you ensure your family’s safe escape in a fire – make sure you have at least one smoke alarm on every level of your home and test them monthly.  And don’t keep this advice to yourself – pass it on.  Is there anyone you know who may need your help in organising a sweep or testing their alarms?”

How often should you have your chimney swept?

Smokeless coals

At least once a year

Wood

Up to four times a year

Bituminous coal

Twice a year

Oil

Once a year

Gas

Once a year

To find a certified Chimney Sweep, or for more information on chimney fire safety including a range of advice leaflets, please visit www.hetas.co.uk

Several Fire Station Open Days are focusing on chimney safety so why not come along and find out why it is essential to get your chimney swept before you light your fires again after the dormant summer months http://bit.ly/29n0k5w