'Lucky escape' after range cooker catches fire

Fri 15 May, 2015

Firefighters say a family had a lucky escape this afternoon after their range cooker caught fire, filling their home with smoke.

Two crews from High Wycombe Fire Station were called to an address at Wheeler End Common, Wheeler End, shortly after 12 noon.

Crew Commander Bill Lambrich said: “When we arrived, there was so much smoke in the house that it was coming out of an upstairs window.

“The family did not have any smoke alarms, and we believe that what saved them was the time of day. Had this fire broken out in the middle of the night, it could have been a different story.

“No-one would have been up and about and able to discover the fire, and there would have been no warning because there were no smoke alarms.”

Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus used a hose reel to put out the fire and a fan to help clear away the smoke. They isolated the cooker - an oil-fired Rayburn 480, which also powers the central heating and hot water – and fitted smoke alarms in the house.

The fire was caused by an electrical fault in the control panel.

Bill added: “We are urging people to make sure they have at least one smoke alarm on every level of their home, and to test them weekly or monthly.”

If you live in Buckinghamshire or Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service will carry out a free safety check, called a Home Fire Risk Check, and fit free smoke alarms where needed.

To book one of these checks, ring 01296 744477 or send an email to cs@bucksfire.gov.uk.