News & Media

Open fireplace causes major damage

  • Trafalgar home gutted by fire

By: CFA Media

Category: Community Safety, Incidents - Structure

  11.06 AM 28 June, 2016

Location: District 9 News

Views: 3758

A burning log rolling out of an open fireplace has caused serious damage to a home in Trafalgar yesterday afternoon (June 27) at midday on Old Sale Road.

An 85-year-old man was asleep in the lounge room where an open fireplace was alight, and he woke when fire was already spreading through the room. Up to 70 per cent of the home has been destroyed.

CFA warns residents with open fires in their homes to always have a guard in place to reduce the risk of solid fuel like logs rolling out or embers from exiting the fire place, which can lead to property damage and injury like this incident has caused.

District 9 Duty Officer Simon Bloink said people with open fire places need to be mindful of the safety precations with solid fuel heating, and to always ensure the house has a working smoke alarm.

“Residents should be getting their chimneys cleaned annually and should be careful with what they put into the fireplace – particularly if it’s an open fireplace,” Mr Bloink said.

“It’s important to keep watch on your fireplace at all times so you can act quickly by calling 000 if something goes wrong, as we saw in Trafalgar today.”

Fireplace safety check list:

  •          Clean chimneys and flues every year
  •          Always place a screen in front of an open fire
  •          Keep clothing at least one metre away from fireplaces
  •          Never let a fire burn after you’ve gone to bed or left the house
  •          Ensure ashes are cold before discarding
  •          Never leave children unattended around fireplaces
  •          Make sure you have working smoke alarms and change the batteries every year
Last Updated: 29 June 2016