Essex County Fire and Rescue Service

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Fatal flat fire

Langham Drive, Clacton
28/01/2019 @ 09:05
Incident Number: 94129
In attendance: 2 x Clacton, 1 x Frinton


A man has sadly died following a flat fire in Clacton this morning (Monday 28 January).

Firefighters were called to the third floor flat just after 9am when a neighbour smelt smoke and called 999.

When crews arrived they saw that the flat was completely full of smoke.

Firefighters immediately entered the flat wearing breathing apparatus to search the flat. Sadly a man was found in the flat and pronounced dead at the scene.

The fire was extinguished at 10:10am. Fire crews managed to stop the fire spreading to any other flat.

Fire Investigator, Watch Manager Lee Hurst, said:

"Following the fire investigation we now know that the fire started in the lounge. The area first affected by the fire had a portable halogen heater and an electrical extension lead, and it is here where we think the fire started.

“This was a tragic accident and, over the coming days and weeks, we will be working hard to spread our safety messages and offer reassurance and advice to residents to try and make sure this doesn't happen again.

"If you use any type of portable heater in your home, please follow our advice to keep you and your family safe:

•    Never leave portable heaters unattended
•    Never leave them on whilst sleeping
•    Ensure that they are positioned well away from anything which could knock them over
•    Ensure they are at least a metre away from any combustible materials (paper/curtains)
•    Never buy second hand halogen heaters
•    Never power a halogen heater from an extension lead - these can easily be overloaded and cause fires
•    Regularly inspect your heater and extension lead for damage. If it’s damaged, don’t use it.

“The best advice I can give is make sure that you have, and regularly test, a smoke alarm on every level of your home. It is the single most important piece of safety equipment in any home. A smoke alarm provides vital warning that a fire has broken out waking sleeping people up and giving everyone time to get safely out.

"We provide and install smoke alarms completely free of charge, simply call: 0300 303 0088 or go online: www.essex-fire.gov.uk/book.

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