Firefighters are urging people to unplug their electrical appliances overnight after a recent fire in Broadbridge Heath.
Crews were called to the property in Cook Way at 1:22am on Tuesday (10 July), after the occupier called 999 for assistance.
The fire is believed to have started from a portable battery power pack, often used for charging devices such as mobile phones, laptops and tablets. The battery pack was left on top of a mattress overnight and as a consequence, overheated and caught fire.
Thankfully, nobody was injured and the fire was out on arrival.
Speaking of the incident, Andrew Parsons, Fire Investigation Officer, said: “At this particular incident, there were two young occupants in the room at the time when the fire started. Thankfully the fire didn’t fully ignite and we were quickly alerted to the emergency.
“I cannot emphasise the importance of unplugging electrical charging devices before you go to bed enough. Many people are under the illusion that they will not be affected by a fire situation if they are to leave their charges unattended, but it is just not worth the risk.”
Electrical Safety First offers the following safety advice:
Use the power pack only for its intended use, e.g. to recharge your mobile phone.
Keep it away from heat sources and liquids, such as, direct sunlight, humidity or water.
Only use connecting cables provided with the battery pack and your mobile device.
Don’t expose to extreme temperatures of hot or cold.
Don’t leave a battery on prolonged charge when not in use.
Don’t cover when charging. Charge in a well-ventilated environment.
In the event of a cell leaking, don’t allow the liquid to come into contact with the skin or eyes. If contact has been made, wash the affected area with water and seek medical advice.
Please note – most power banks and bars use lithium-Ion chemistry batteries that will naturally get warm due to high currents flowing during charge and discharge cycles. It is normal for them to feel warm to touch, but if they are too hot to handle, do not use and seek advice from the manufacturer.
West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service is at the heart of West Sussex County Council’s Communities and Public Protection Directorate, working to support communities to become safer, stronger and more resilient through a combination of prevention, protection and response activities.