London Fire Brigade

Rhino fundraiser offered BBQ lesson by fire crews

10 June 2013

London Fire Brigade is offering to give fire safety advice to a barbecue-a-day fundraiser after pictures of him cooking caused concern.

Matt Hartley, from Wimbledon, plans to have a barbecue every day for a year in a bid to raise funds to adopt a rhino.  Pictures in the press showed Matt cooking under a gazebo which is a huge fire risk as the heat from a barbecue can easily catch the flammable material alight.

Fire crews from Wimbledon are inviting Matt to come down to his local fire station for a unique lesson in barbecue safety. If he attends and takes the Brigade’s advice firefighters have promised to sponsor him in his fundraising efforts.

London Fire Brigade spokesperson said:

“Matt’s fundraising idea is fantastic but if he’s not careful he could end up burning more than his bangers.

“We want to help Matt raise as much money as possible and one of the best ways is keeping him from having a fire. It ‘s tempting during a typical British summer to bring your barbecue under cover but it can be very dangerous as the heat can easily catch materials on fire.

“Matt is very welcome at the station or we can visit him at home, give him advice and make his fund raising as successful as possible.”

This advice comes a day after a family’s summer house was completely destroyed after a barbecue got out of control on Cheyham Way in Sutton.

Top three barbecue fire safety tips from London’s firefighters:

• Keep barbecues away from the house, sheds, fences, garden furniture and overhanging trees or shrubs. Don't put the barbecue where people have to squeeze past it.
• Never leave the barbecue unattended
• If you are the chef, don’t drink too much alcohol while cooking.

Notes to editors

More advice here http://www.london-fire.gov.uk/BarbecueSafety.asp