Keep your chimney safe for Santa

HOMEOWNERS across North Devon have been urged to make sure their chimney stays safe and clear for Santa this Christmas! With the colder weather also arriving, cosy open fires are being lit, but without a little preventative maintenance and sweeping the fe

HOMEOWNERS across North Devon have been urged to make sure their chimney stays safe and clear for Santa this Christmas!

With the colder weather also arriving, cosy open fires are being lit, but without a little preventative maintenance and sweeping the festive season could become one to remember for all the wrong reasons.

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service has seen an increase in chimney fires in recent weeks, including in North Devon and is encouraging people to check their chimney is clean, safe and swept for Santa's arrival.

Area Manager for Community Safety, Nick Manning, explained: "With the colder winter months looming, people will begin to start using open fires and their chimneys again.


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"In order to keep you and your family safe from fire, you need to take necessary steps such as ensuring your chimney is swept regularly, depending upon what fuel you burn and I would urge all householders to have a working smoke alarm in their home."

Chimney fires can cause serious structural damage to a home, with the risks being even greater if the property has a thatched roof.

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The damage is not only fire based but also the dirt and smell left from all the soot and smoke, which would affect your personal property - including all the Christmas presents!

Top Tips

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service have provided some top tips for safer chimneys:

1) Always use a fire guard to protect against flying sparks from hot embers.

2) Make sure embers are properly put out before you go to bed.

3) Keep chimneys and flues clean and well maintained.

4) Bird nests, cobwebs and other blockages within chimney to be removed.

5) Consider having a carbon monoxide detector fitted as an additional safeguard against the build up of poisonous fumes.

Plus ensure you have working smoke alarms so any sign of fire will be detected early.

To request a Home Safety Visit call free on: 0800 7311822. For other fire safety advice, contact the Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service Helpline on (01392) 872288 or visit www.dsfire.gov.uk.

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