Fire chiefs urge people to follow advice and avoid a blaze in the home this Christmas

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FIRE chiefs are urging residents to follow some simple electrical safety tips to avoid a horror blaze in the home this Christmas.

There were 90 accidental house fires in Cleveland from April to November this year, 37 of which were electrical-related.

The overall accidental house fire figures are dropping year-on-year but as part of Cleveland Fire Brigade’s Stay Safe and Celebrate campaign, fire officers are warning residents of the potential dangers in the home.

Residents should always unplug appliances when they’re not in use and regularly check for worn or frayed wires.

Tumble dryers and washing machines should be cleaned and maintained and all appliances should have a British or European Safety Mark.

People are warned not to overload plug sockets and not to leave electric blankets folded. Hot plugs and sockets, fuses that blow for no obvious reason, lights that flicker and brown scorch marks on sockets, plugs and fuse boxes are all warning signs which should be checked out by a qualified electrician.

Les Jones, the brigade’s head of community safety, said: “Although overall accidental house fires are continuing to drop year-on-year, a significant proportion of accidental house fires are still electrical-related.”