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Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service issue garden storage advice after compost causes house fire

Firefighters tackle house fire which started in compost bin...

30 May 2012

At 1210 hours on Saturday 26 05 12, a neighbour alerted Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service to a fire at a private residence in Rother Road in Cove, near Farnborough.

A total of eight fire appliances and supporting vehicles were in attendance. Four fire appliances from Rushmoor Fire Station were initially mobilised to the scene. Also in attendance were one fire appliance from Fleet, the special equipment unit, aerial ladder platform, two fire appliances and command support from Basingstoke, one fire appliance from Yateley, one fire appliance from Hartley Wintney, the multi-role vehicle from Havant and the incident command unit from Service Headquarters in Eastleigh. Volunteers on call with the Red Cross in Hampshire also leapt into action to assist at this incident. Mobilised by Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, the Fire and Emergency Support Service (FESS) team provide emotional and practical support to the family.

The fire affected three two story terraced private dwellings measuring 30 metres by 12 metres. The fire started at the rear of one of the properties and caused 100% smoke damage and 50% damage by fire to the property, 50% smoke damage and 50% fire damage to the adjoining property and 10% fire damage to the roof of the third property.

Group Manager Martin Walters who was officer in charge of the incident said:

“Crews worked extremely hard in hot arduous conditions to tackle the fire from within the confined roof space, whilst the aerial ladder platform was utilised from outside of the building. Due to their actions the fire was contained to the end two properties and within two hours the fire was extinguished by firefighters using 18 breathing apparatus, four jets and three hose reels.”

Crews regularly re-inspected the scene and at 2125 hours used one hose reel to cool down structural areas within the roof spaces.

Station Manager Paul Robson from Rushmoor Fire Station said:

“The grass cuttings contained in the bin had heated up during the recent hot weather conditions to such an extent that it self-combusted and caught alight. To avoid similar incidents of this kind I urge residents to regularly check the storage of grass cuttings, compost or any similar natural materials to ensure that they do not overheat. Storage facilities of this kind should be located away from buildings, fencing and decking areas to reduce the risk of fire spread should a fire occur.”

Firefighters from Rushmoor Fire Station have visited local residents to give fire safety advice and deliver home safety advice leaflets. Nepali leaflets were distributed to Nepalese members of the community.

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