Kidsgrove residents are being warned about the dangers of chip pans following two recent house fires in the area.
"Neither properties had smoke alarms fitted which is inexcusable when we fit them free of charge."
Assistant Area Commander for Newcastle, Mick Daniels
The first incident, at 11pm last Wednesday, resulted in two men requiring oxygen therapy. Two crews from Kidsgrove attended the incident on Gloucester Road. A chip pan had been left unattended, it had then ignited and was only spotted when one of the occupiers returned to the kitchen. The occupiers had then tried to tackle the fire by putting a damp cloth over the pan and taking it outside.
The second incident last Friday at 5.30pm was on Pennyfields Road, Newchapel. The incident, attended by two crews from Kidsgrove and Biddulph, involved a chip pan on fire in the kitchen of the semi detached property. Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus used one hose reel jet to extinguish the fire. An 88 year old lady required oxygen therapy as a result of the incident.
Assistant Area Commander for Newcastle, Mick Daniels said: "In both these incidents the occupiers did exactly what we tell people not to do – they tried to tackle the fire themselves. Chip pan fires are very unpredictable, which is why we advise people to leave it to the experts.
"We do urge people to avoid using chip pans because of the dangers they present, however if you do insist on using one and it does ignite, turn off the power, if it is safe to do so, get out, closing the door behind you, and ring 999.
"Neither properties had smoke alarms fitted which is inexcusable when we fit them free of charge. In both cases firefighters fitted smoke alarms there and then for the occupiers."