Chimney fire won’t ruin woman’s Christmas

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An oven fire almost ruined a woman’s Christmas in Sowerby.

Crews from Elland were initially called to the three-storey property on Shield Hall Lane at 10.15am today (Wednesday) where they found smoke coming out of the Rayburn cooker.

On closer inspection they found that a build-up of soot in the chimney connected to the oven had burnt through the steel flue and into first floor bedroom.

Because of the high winds, firefighters couldn’t use their standard ladders to access the roof, so had to call the specialist Combined Aerial Rescue Platform from Halifax.

Having used a thermal imaging camera to find the high burning points of the fire, firefighters cut away part of the first floor and used the minimum amount of water to extinguish the fire. They fed the water down through the chimney, having accessed it from the roof.

The female occupant wasn’t injured in the incident and, fortunately, has a back-up electric oven to cook her Christmas dinner in.

Firefighters were at the scene for over two hours.

A spokesperson said it was important that residents have their chimneys cleaned at least twice a year.