Following a fire at a on Thursday night (28 June), Shropshire Fire and Rescue would like to remind the public of the risk of fire from prolonged, strong sunlight entering a property.
The house in south Shropshire suffered significant damage to the bedroom and smoke damage to all other parts of the first floor. The cause of the fire was attributed to refraction of sunlight shining directly onto a vanity mirror, and onto bedding.
Cases of reflected light starting fires within the home are rare, however, the risk exists all year round, and not just the summer.
We urge the public to be aware of the potential danger of reflective surfaces intensifying the sun’s rays. To minimise the risk of fire, make sure reflective items such as mirrors, glass ornaments and other glass items such as jars are not in direct view of sunlight. Aerosols can also be affected by direct sunlight and should be stored in a cabinet or a safe position out of direct sunlight.
Preventive measures may include using blinds or curtains, or repositioning items to a different location.
Shropshire Fire and Rescue also urge the public to be aware of the risk of fire from discarded glass/plastic bottles and cigarettes on dry grass and foliage. The ongoing fire on Stalybridge moor, near Manchester, provides evidence of the devastation caused when a fire starts during a continued period of hot weather.
Unfortunately, the occupiers of this incident did not have smoke detectors, which would have provided an early warning of a fire within the property. Ensure your home has a working smoke detector on each floor and test them weekly.
More details regarding last nights incident:
At 19:53 last night, Shropshire FRS was alerted to fire in a house fire in Clunton, south Shropshire. 10 firefighters from both Clun and Craven Arms were mobilised and arrived at the incident within 6 minutes, along with an operations officer.
Assertive firefighting and tactics ensured the fire was contained within the bedroom with only smoke damage to the remainder of the first floor.