Be Warm – Be Safe, 175 Cannabis Plants found in Meir
Written by Hitmix Local News on 8 January 2024
We are urging residents across Staffordshire to Be Warm, Be Safe this New Year, as low temperatures and high heating costs continue across the county.
As the cost of living increases, so too does the need to heat your home cheaply. However, this can bring with it some serious dangers.
And with more people looking to low-cost, unsafe ways to heat their homes this winter comes an increased likelihood of accidental house fires.
During the winter period last year, we attended 105 accidental house fires. Whilst this is a reduction on the previous year, we need to make sure that that number continues to go down and that people understand the risks involved with alternative heating methods.
Here is a list of some of the most common causes of house fires and what you can do to avoid them:
CAUSE: Candles being used to light up the home.
HOW TO AVOID: Use LED candles or a torch.
CAUSE: You are unaware that there is a fire or carbon monoxide leak in your home.
HOW TO AVOID: Ensure that you have a working smoke alarm on each floor. If you have fuel-burning appliances, you should also have a carbon monoxide detector.
CAUSE: Clothing and fabrics catching fire after being positioned near candles or heaters.
HOW TO AVOID: Move candles away from flammable materials. Ensure that they are fully put out before you leave the house or go to bed. Keep heaters a safe distance away from other materials. Do not sit or dry fabrics close to heaters or fireplaces.
CAUSE: Electric heaters plugged into extension leads, causing them to overload.
HOW TO AVOID: Only plug electric heaters into a wall socket. Do not plug them into extension leads.
CAUSE: Liquids spilling onto electric blankets.
HOW TO AVOID: Avoid drinking or using a hot water bottle when using your electric blanket.
CAUSE: Outdoor camping stoves and heaters being used indoors.
HOW TO AVOID: Do not use any outdoor equipment to heat inside your home. There is a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
CAUSE: Unsuitable fuel used on open fires or in log burners
HOW TO AVOID: Look for the Woodsure “Safe to Burn” logo on your fuel packaging, to ensure that it is appropriate for heating appliances.
CAUSE: Fuel stored in the wrong place
HOW TO AVOID: Do not store fuel, such as logs, near any heat source.
CAUSE: Running white goods, such as dishwashers, washing machines and tumble dryers, overnight, in order to save money.
HOW TO AVOID: Do not run white goods or charge items whilst you are asleep, because you will have less time to react and escape. Electricity costs the same at any time of day or night for most people.
You should also get your chimneys swept and use a fireguard in front of an open fireplace. Keep a safe distance from open fires and other heaters.
Ian Read, Head of Prevent, Protect and Partnerships at Staffordshire Fire & Rescue, said: “The cost of living crisis has, unfortunately, meant that people are turning to unsafe ways and means of heating their homes on the cheap.
“These can and will cause rapid house fires, with long-lasting and potentially fatal consequences.
“Whilst our job, as firefighters, is to tackle fires, what we really want is for the public to take as many precautions as they can to prevent a blaze from starting.
“As we always say, prevention is better than cure. I would urge residents to implement these safety measures now to minimise their risk of, and hopefully avoid, a house fire in the future.
“Don’t make cuts when it comes to your fire safety.”
For specific guidance on how you can stay safe this winter, please visit: Be Warm. Be Safe. (staffordshirefire.gov.uk)
Staffordshire Police are appealing for information after cannabis plants were found at a home in Stoke-on-Trent. It comes after officers were called to an address in the Meir area in the very early hours of last Thursday following reports of suspicious activity.
175 cannabis plants were found at the address which has since been secured.
If you have any information, CCTV or dashcam footage that could help Police with their investigation, call 101, quoting incident of 030 of 4 January, or you can message them using Live Chat on the Staffordshire Police website.