The Most Common Causes of House Fires in Lancashire

Faulty Appliances

In a recent news from the Home Office, it has been revealed that more than 500 house fires in Lancashire between April 2017 and March 2018 were caused by faulty appliances in the home – and that they could all have been prevented.

What’s clear is that most of the fires were caused by cooking appliances, showing that misuse and badly-repaired appliances used every day are putting homeowners at risk.

The most common reason for a house fire in Lancashire between April 2017 and March 2018 was through faulty or misused cookers and ovens. Left unattended, cookers and ovens can be unpredictable. If they are in a state of disrepair they can also fail to regulate their temperature correctly, causing flares in heat and then fires. 302 fires were recorded as being started by these appliances.

The next most common fire-starting appliance was grills and toasters, accounting for 64 of the fires logged in the report. Electrical appliances are often the cause of house fires, and if a fault occurs, bread can become lodged in the machine causing a fire that can spread quickly.

Forgetting food under the grill is also a main cause of fire, combined with faulty or disabled smoke alarms failing to alert the homeowner that their food is burning.

Separate rings and hot plates have become popular as their prices drop, and with many wannabe cooks and foodies looking to create videos of their cooking demonstrations, these electric rings provide the perfect way to do so. Unfortunately they are being used in unsafe conditions, or have been sold without any safety certifications.

If you are using separate rings or hot plates, make sure to keep them well away from flammable objects and furnishings such as curtains.

The usual suspects 

More than 91 fires were started by faulty appliances or leads in Lancashire from April 2017 to March 2018. Across England, faulty appliances caused more than 2,400 fires.

Faulty appliances are a huge problem for the fire service, and their advice to all homeowners is to check their appliances before using them, and fixing or replacing them if there is any unusual wear or a fault develops.

What’s still causing a lot of fires despite their bad reputation is the humble but dangerous chip pan. Misuse is still causing chip pan fires all over the country, so if you have one and use it, remember the following tips:

  • Use a cooking thermometer to keep the oil at a regular temperature
  • Never leave a chip pan unattended
  • Don’t move a chip pan before it has cooled completely
  • Never fill a chip pan more than a third with oil
  • Never use water to douse flames – use a damp tea towel or tablecloth
  • Have a clear escape route

Repairing after a fire can seem intimidating, but as with all big jobs, breaking it down into smaller tasks makes it much easier to deal with. If you have been affected by a house fire, please follow this link to find out what steps you can take to move forward.

If you’d like more tips on how your home can stay fire safe, visit the Fire Kills website

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