Household appliances caused hundreds of fires in Cambridgeshire homes


- Credit: Archant

A new report that provides a breakdown of information about the household appliances that are most likely to start fires in the home has been published.

Cookers, stand-alone hobs and toasters are the domestic appliances most likely to start fires in Cambridgeshire, according to new figures released by the Home Office.

They show that 665 house fires were started by a household appliance in the area covered by Cambridge Fire and Rescue Service between April 2012 and March last year.

Almost half the incidents attended by the service originated in cookers and 291 fires resulted in casualties over the five-year period.

The most common domestic appliances to cause fires in Cambridgeshire between April 2012 and March 2017 were; cookers, including ovens (291 fires); individual rings and hot plates (88 fires), grills and toasters (54 fires), tumble dryers (45 fires); dishwashers (35 fires).

The Fire Brigades Union warned that both manufacturers and householders have a duty to prevent fires caused by everyday appliances.

A spokesman for the union said: “Manufacturers have a duty to ensure the products they sell are safe for the public to use and do not pose a threat to life.

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“We can all play our part in reducing fire risk by registering products with the manufacturers when we buy them, so that we are notified if there is a safety-related recall.

“Make sure that the electrical wiring in our homes is in good order, and ensure that we have working smoke alarms and we have a plan for what to do if they go off.”

More than 139 fires were started by faulty appliances or leads in Cambridgeshire over the five years. Across England, such faults were responsible for 13,000 fires.

The most common reason for fires started by appliances was misuse of the equipment, which caused 247 fires in Cambridgeshire, and nearly 48,000 nationally.

But the old staple of fire safety talks, chip pans, were still the cause of 69 fires in Cambridgeshire, and more than 9,000 fires nationally.