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Last updated: 09/07/2018, 6:18 PM

Barking - flat fire

04/04/2018 19:58
Barking and Dagenham
House or flat fire

Firefighters have issued a safety reminder after unattended cooking is believed to have caused a fire at a flat in Hepworth Gardens, Barking.

Two fire engines and 10 firefighters and officers were called to the fire in a ground floor flat. A small part of the kitchen was damaged by fire.

A man was rescued from the ground floor by crews wearing breathing apparatus. He was treated at the scene for smoke inhalation by London Ambulance Service crews.

The Brigade’s fire investigators believe the cause of the fire was unattended cooking.

Firefighter Lisa MacLennan, who was at the scene, said: “It was a neighbour who raised the alarm to this fire as they heard the smoke alarm sounding and called us. 

“This incident shows how important it is to have smoke alarms and is also a timely reminder for people to take care when cooking. 

“A pot had been left on the hob and had boiled dry, so it was very smoke logged when we got there. 

“You should never leave cooking unattended and if you do have to leave the room, make sure you turn the heat off.” 

The Brigade was called at 1958 and the fire was under control at 2033. Fire crews from Ilford and Barking fire stations attended the scene.

 How to prevent cooking fires 

  • Avoid leaving cooking unattended
  • Don’t cook if you are tired, have been drinking alcohol or taking medication that might make you drowsy
  • Take care not to lean over hot hobs and keep tea towels and cloths away from the cooker and hob
  • Be careful to keep the over, hob, cooker hood and grill clean to avoid a build-up of fat and grease, which could ignite and cause a fire
  • Use spark devices to light gas cookers – they are much safer than matches or lights as they don’t have a naked flame
  • Double check the cooker and hob are turned off when you’ve finished cooking
  • Check toasters are clean and placed away from anything that can catch fire
  • Never put anything metal in the microwave
  • Never use a barbecue indoors or on a balcony – burning or smouldering fuel can cause carbon monoxide poisoning
  • Supervise children and pets in the kitchen at all times and keep matches and saucepan handles out of reach

 If a pan catches fire 

  • Don’t tackle the fire yourself and don’t attempt to move the pan
  • Never throw water over a fire as it could create a fireball
  • Turn off the heat, if it is safe to do so
  • Leave the room, close the door, shout a warning to others and call 999

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