17 November 2009
Firefighters are urging people who don't have smoke alarms to contact Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service following a fire in Bletchley this morning.
A crew from Bletchley Fire Station was called to a semi-detached house in Ludlow Close at 7.05am after a fire started in the front room. A mother and young child were inside at the time.
Watch Manager Shaun Cunningham said: "We believe it was caused by an electrical fault - possibly an overloaded socket behind the television.
"The mother thought there had been a power cut, and when she walked into the front room a little later it was full of smoke.
"The house was not fitted with smoke alarms, so if the fire had started earlier in the morning, when no-one was up, the consequences could have been much worse."
Firefighters used two sets of breathing apparatus, one hose reel and a ventilation fan to put out the fire and clear the smoke. About 50 per cent of the ground floor was smoke-damaged.
Shaun is urging householders to sign up for a free home safety check, which includes the fitting of free smoke alarms where needed.
You can book one by ringing 01296 744477, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or filling in the online form at www.bucksfire.gov.uk/bucksfire/free
He is also urging people to follow these electrical safety tips:
- If you have an adaptor, use a "bar type" one with a fuse and keep the total output of all plugs in the adaptor to no more than 13 amps. A kettle alone uses 13 amps.
- Unplug electrical appliances when you're not using them.
- Make sure the plug has the correct fuse for the appliance.
- Don't put cables under carpets or mats.
- Check for signs of loose wiring and faulty plugs or sockets (such as scorch marks or flickering lights), and have any problems you find fixed.
- Replace any worn or taped-up cables and leads.