RESIDENTS are being urged to avoid having bonfires in their garden as fire chiefs warn of their dangers.
Bosses at Cleveland Fire Brigade are asking householders to stay safe and protect the environment by not burning rubbish in their gardens.
They urge people to use council recycling facilities and to compost garden waste instead, rather than having unnecessary fires.
Chiefs say garden fires cause a drain on brigade resources and urged people to use common sense.
Station manager Steve Patton said: “At this time of the year a lot of people clear out their garages or have a spring clean and decide to get rid of their rubbish by having a bonfire in the garden.
“However, what they don’t realise is that this is very anti-social, discharges pollutants into the atmosphere and potentially puts property and lives at risk.
“We have witnessed so many incidents over the years when fires have got out of control and caused serious damage to property and threatened lives.”
For more information about disposing household waste, call Hartlepool Borough Council on (01429) 523846.
To find out about organising a brigade home safety visit, call (01429) 874063, or visit www.clevelandfire.gov.uk for further safety information.