FIREFIGHTERS have warned of the dangers of unattended electric heaters after one set fire to a flat in Bognor Regis last night (October 5).
West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service initially reported this morning that the cause of the fire might have been a candle setting light to a curtain.
However, a spokeswoman has since confirmed that it was in fact an electric heater setting fire to a bed.
“From what we understand it was pulled quite close to the bed and it actually set fire to the bed,” she said. “The occupier left the bed and went to the communal area to make a cup of tea and the heater set fire to the bed.”
She said it was important to emphasise the dangers of leaving electric heaters unattended.
“Please take extra care when using portable electric heaters,” she said.
“If you’re going to use an electric heater we would advice placing it in the centre of the room and away from any furniture or other flammable items.
“Make sure it’s stable so it can’t topple over.
“As we move through autumn and into winter that advice becomes more important because people are turning to portable heaters for another source of heating.
“If you’re leaving the room we would advise switching appliances off.”
She also said people should ensure they had a working smoke detector.
It is understood the occupant of the ground-floor flat was a mature student and was treated for smoke inhalation at the scene.
The British Red Cross was assisting him and other residents of the two-storey building last night and today.
Did you witness the fire? Call 01243 534154 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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