England

Devon and Somerset Fire crews deal with 'a chimney blaze a day'

Chimney sweep. Pic: Thinkstock
Image caption The fire service said regular chimney inspections could help prevent fires

Fire crews in Devon and Somerset have been called out to at least one chimney fire a day, managers have said.

Devon and Somerset Fire Service dealt with more than 40 fires in May, a rise of 25% on last year.

Fire investigation officer Mike Burrows said it was partly down to an "unusual May" which has been "fairly cold", meaning more people had been using open fires and wood burners at home.

The service said regular chimney inspections could prevent fires.

Mr Burrows said: "Part of it is that people are feeling cold, and it's part people lighting the fires past their normal burning season.

"They think 'I've got the whole summer to get my chimney swept' and they haven't got round to it yet."

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