The awareness week calls for homeowners to act responsibly and get their chimneys swept by an approved sweep to prevent chimney damage and, in the worst-case scenario, household fires.
Vikki Thomas, DWFRS Safe & Well manager, said: “A clean chimney can help prevent fires and structural damage to your property. Getting a qualified chimney sweep to inspect your chimney regularly, and using a quality assured fuel, are the keys to prevention. As well as removing soot and tar deposits, and clearing obstructions such as bird or animal nests, leaves and debris, the sweep will also check for any problems with the chimney or liner.”
The service attended almost 170 chimney fires across the region in 2020-21 and has the following advice for people using chimneys in their property:
- Don’t use flammable liquids such as petrol or paraffin to light your fire
- Don’t burn excessive amounts of paper or rubbish
- Don’t overload the fire with fuel
- Take advice from your chimney sweep on how often they should visit, as the type of fire you have can affect this
- Always get the chimney swept before the colder weather sets in
- Make sure you have working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms at home, and test them regularly
More tips for staying fire safe can be found at: www.dwfire.org.uk/safety-at-home. If you have any fire safety concerns, you can also request a free Safe & Well visit, where someone will visit you to help you assess the fire risk in your home and offer support and guidance. Call free on 0800 038 2323 or apply online.
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