House fires in Chesterfield twice as high than anywhere in Derbyshire

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Fire chiefs are concerned at the number of house fires in Chesterfield - because the figure is twice as high as the rest of the county.

According to new statistics, there have been 63 dwelling fires in the town since April 2015 to date.

Half of the blazes were caused by cooking, 25 per cent by electrics and 25 per cent by smoking or candles.

Group manager for Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service Bob Curry said: “Chesterfield is bucking the trend for the county, it is such a high rate.

“We are really concerned that these fires are having a big impact on people.

“The effects of a fire can be devastating for everybody involved.

“It is just about general carelessness.”

Although there have been no fatalities as a direct result of house fires, there have been four serious injuries.

“We have had five or six close calls,” Mr Curry said. “The vast majority (85 per cent) of these fires were avoidable through people taking extra care.”

DFRS are also concerned that some people are not taking fire safety as serious as they should do.

Mr Curry said: “I think in general people take it seriously. But when you ask them about fires people never expect it to happen to them, they always think it will happen to someone else.”

The main worries include homeowners not having working smoke alarms, as well as the alarms not being installed in the right places within a property.

“You would not leave your house unlocked when you go out so don’t go out without having a smoke alarm,” Mr Curry added.

“The fires are based around cooking, smoking and use of candles and that type of thing.

“We want people to be more careful. If they are going to use a chip pan, although we would prefer they didn’t use one at all, then they need to be careful.

“They must not leave pans unattended, it is easy to get distracted especially if they have children.”

“All electrical items should be of the right standard also.”

For fire safety advice, call 01246 223500.