Firefighters issue safety warning after wood burning stove fire

Concerned firefighters have urged residents across Tyne and Wear to heat their homes safely after a Gateshead home was destroyed in a fire.

The New Year started in horror for one Chopwell resident when their wood burning stove caught fire in the living room of her home.

The stove was being used in the living room to keep warm without switching on the heating.

Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service (TWFRS) responded to the fire just after 10pm on January 2nd.

They have revealed that crews rushed to the scene to find a bungalow engulfed in flames.

Using their breathing apparatus and thermal imaging camera, the firefighters began battling the blaze that had consumed the bungalow.

Thankfully before firefighters arrival, the female occupier of the home managed to get out of the property.

She received treatment from the North East Ambulance and was taken to hospital with suspected burn injuries.

Today (Tuesday) senior firefighters are calling for members of the public to rethink their “heating hacks” as many of them are more dangerous than we think.

Group Manager Paul Thompson, Head of Service Delivery West for TWFRS, said “We know times are tough and people feel like there is no other option than these alternative ways to heat their home but they are putting themselves in danger.

“There are much safer ways to keep yourself and your home warm this winter and you can find lots of information on our website.

“We also want to remind people to never tackle a fire themselves and would always encourage you to get to safety and call 999.

“Throwing water on a fire caused by oil igniting or an electrical fire can be disastrous, this can cause a fire to spread even further.

“Please check your smoke alarms and make sure they are in working order as they are the first line of defence when it comes to fighting fires and keeping you safe.

“If you need any additional support for either yourselves, or a vulnerable family member or neighbour, then please get in touch. We are here to help.”

You can find more information about how to heat your home safely on the TWFRS website.

You can also request a safe and well visit for your home to ensure your smoke alarms are working and place correctly to keep yourself and your family safe in the event of a fire