Woman and child escape “severe” house blaze

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A woman and a child escaped a “severe” house blaze in the early hours of yesterday morning.

Firefighters from Alfreton and Ashfield were mobilised to a house fire on Downing Street, South Normanton, at 1.45am on Monday, October 31.

The cause of the blaze was hot coals from an open fire, not protected by a fire guard.

The lounge area of the property suffered extensive smoke and heat damage.

Closed internal doors prevented the spread of fire and the house from any further damage.

Station manager, Steve Ratcliffe, said: “This fire serves as a stark reminder of the importance of using fire guards when burning fuel on an open fire.

“Thankfully on this occasion, the occupants were able to get out of the property and were dealt with quickly for the effects of smoke inhalation at the scene, but this could have been a very different story.”

Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service is now warning people of the importance of open fire safety and ask that anyone with an open fire follow some simple safety precautions:

Safety tips include:

- Always use a fire/spark guard to protect against sparks and hot embers

- If you have young children and pets, consider using a safety guard

- Make sure the fire is out before going to bed at night, or leaving the house

- Keep chimneys and flues clean and well maintained – make sure your chimney is swept regularly

- Ensure your chimney is swept according to the type of fuel used:

-Never interrupt the air supply by blocking air vents or air bricks

- Ensure you have a working smoke alarm on every level of your home and test it weekly – only working smoke alarms can save lives

- Have a pre planed escape plan

- Use a carbon monoxide alarm to warn of dangerous fumes

- If you have a fire, get out, stay out and call 999

For more information about keeping safe, go to: www.derbys-fire.gov.uk