Christmas 'cocktail' is a fire hazard

Watch Manager Tony Druce with Sarah Gill and son Harrison Wheeler (7) who won a hamper and a visit to Telford fire station in a fire safety competition organised by firefighters at Telford shopping centre.

Drinking large amounts of alcohol and cooking is a "dangerous cocktail" at Christmas, warn community fire safety officers.

Shropshire fire crews have been giving out the message at fire safety events across the county in a bid to prevent house fires during the festive season.

"Our message is especially important at Christmas and the New Year as people celebrate and drink small amounts of alcohol throughout the day, unaware of the accumulative effect," said Rabinder Dhami, team leader of the community fire safety department at Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service.

"They fall asleep while smoking or leave cooking unattended. Drinking alcohol and cooking is a dangerous cocktail. The results can be devastating and sometimes fatal."

Householders are also urged to check they have working smoke alarms inside their homes in order to ensure they have early warning in the event of a fire.

17th December, 2009