5:53 AM, Friday 25 September, 2020
Linseed oil-soaked rags self-combusting
Aylesbury End, Beaconsfield
One appliance and crew from Beaconsfield and two from High Wycombe attended. They were alerted after smoke was seen coming from the letterbox. Firefighters used one set of breathing apparatus and a fan to clear the smoke. The rags were in a container. There was no fire damage to the property.
Rags soaked with linseed oil are a fire hazard, particularly if they are stored in a restricted space, where any heat produced while they are drying cannot dissipate.
They should not be dried inside a building, and the following methods of safe disposal or storage should be considered:
- Hang rags out to dry on a washing line, where air movement will remove the heat as quickly as it is formed, before disposing of them in your outdoor refuse sack or bin.
- Soak the rags in water and seal in a plastic bag before disposal.
- When they are dry, store the rags in an air-tight, preferably metal, container.