Last updated: 09/07/2018, 6:21 PM

Family's lucky escape from Edmonton chip pan blaze which killed budgie

17/01/2018 00:00
House or flat fire

A family had a lucky escape from a chip pan fire which claimed the life of their pet budgie.
There were no smoke alarms fitted in the property and the woman and two children were only alerted to the fire after hearing noises from downstairs and going to investigate.
They left the property before the Brigade arrived and were given a precautionary check by London Ambulance Service crews but were uninjured.
Two fire engines and 10 firefighters and officers were called to the fire at a terraced house in Monmouth Road, Edmonton.
Part of the kitchen was destroyed in the fire and the rest of the room was damaged by smoke and heat.
Crews found a budgie dead in its cage in the kitchen. 
The Brigade’s fire investigators believe the cause of the fire was a chip pan left on the gas hob after earlier use. The occupant thought the gas had been turned off and left the pan unattended. 
A London Fire Brigade spokesperson said: “You should be extremely careful when you’re deep frying food or you could be risking your home, your property or even your life.
“The fat in chip pans can easily catch fire and you should never leave a pan unattended, not even for a minute.
“In this case the occupant thought the gas had been turned off – so you should always double check when you’ve finished cooking.
“If a fire does break out, you should never try to tackle it yourself. Get out and dial 999.

“This fire also highlights the importance of having smoke alarms in your property.

“Homes need multiple smoke alarms. Fires can start in any room so smoke alarms should be fitted in your hallways and landings and in any rooms where you smoke, use candles, incense sticks or portable heaters and leave electrical equipment on or on charge – such as satellite boxes, heaters, computers or mobile phones.”

The Brigade’s chip pan safety tips:

  • Think about replacing your chip pan with an electric fryer - they are safer to use 
  • If you have to use a chip pan, never fill it more than a third full with oil or fat
  • Take extra care if you’ve been drinking alcohol – it might be safer to eat a cold snack or get a takeaway than use your fryer
  • Never leave the pan unattended with the heat on – not even for a few seconds
  • Don’t put chips in the pan if the oil has started smoking. Turn off the heat and leave the oil to cool down or it could catch fire

If you pan does catch fire:

  • Don’t move the pan
  • Never put water into a flaming chip pan – it will create a huge fire ball
  • If it’s safe to do so – turn off the heat
  • Don’t take risks by tackling a fire. Get out, stay out and call 999
  • Get smoke alarms and test them regularly