Chimney Fire Safety

Chimney Fire Safety Week 

5th-11th September 2016

When it comes to your family’s safety, don’t risk a chimney fire!

Chimney fires continue to rage throughout Cambridgeshire and the UK, with the vast majority avoidable by having chimneys cleaned regularly by a professional chimney sweep to remove built up soot and deposits.

This year, Chimney Fire Safety Week, 5th_11th September 2016 aims to highlight this issue to chimney users and educate them on how to avoid a chimney fire in their home.


The Fire and Rescue Service have the following tips for safer chimneys:

  1. Keep chimneys and flues well maintained
  2. Make sure embers are properly put out before you go to bed
  3. Always use a fire guard to protect against flying sparks from hot embers

Statistics show that there are approximately 7,000 chimney fires a year in England but most of them are preventable.

The most common causes of chimney fires are:

  1. Infrequent sweeping and cleaning
  2. Improper appliance sizing
  3. Burning unseasoned wet wood
  4. Overnight burning or smouldering wood for long periods in wood stoves


Cambridge Fire and Rescue Service provides the following steps to enjoying your open fireplace safely:

  1. Have your chimney swept at least once a year, or more frequently if you burn wood
  2. Avoid burning resinous woods as soot builds up quickly
  3. Burn only suitable fuels
  4. Do not overload the grate or appliance
  5. Do not bank fires too high and remember to let them burn down well before you retire to bed
  6. Check the hearth, floor and furnishings near the fire for hot sparks or embers before you go to bed
  7. Use a fire or spark guard to prevent accidental fires and make sure that it has the kite mark or conforms to a relevant British / European standard
  8. Do not place objects on or over the mantle-piece which may cause you to stand too close to the fire to reach or use them
  9. Inspect your chimney breast regularly – particularly in the roof space – to ensure that it is sound and that sparks or fumes cannot escape through cracks or broken bricks

Read our detailed blog on ‘Chimney Fires’ here

For further information and advice on how often its is recommended to have your chimney cleaned, read here.

It’s Time to Get Sweeping!

Chimney Fire Safety is even in the news, ITV report that 5000 chimney fires were dealt with between April 2014 and March 2015. Read here…

Chimney Sweeps Save Lives


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Wight Initiatives Ltd,
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Cambridge, CB1 1AH
The Officers’ Mess Business Centre, Royston Road, Duxford, CB22 4QH
Registered in the UK # 7725 203
VAT # 218 3459 04