Warning following explosion of oxygen cylinderPosted 25/11/2013 14:10:36
Fire Officers are warning of the dangers of smoking close to pressurised cylinders after a cigarette caused a fire in which an oxygen cylinder to exploded in a property in Rhyl in the early hours of this morning.
Thankfully the residents, an elderly couple, managed to make their own way out of their home unharmed but the fire caused 100% fire damage to the bedroom and 90% heat and smoke damage to the reminder of the property on Molineaux Road, Rhyl.
Crews from Rhyl were called to the property at 05.32hrs this morning and used three hose reel jets, one main jet and six sets of breathing apparatus to extinguish the fire.
It appears that the oxygen line connected to the oxygen cylinder in the bedroom was ignited by a cigarette.
Gary Brandrick, Senior Fire Safety Manager for North Wales Fire and Rescue Service said: "This incident highlights the extreme damage which can be caused when cigarettes or naked flames come into contact with pressurised containers. This couple was extremely lucky to escape unharmed - we could so very easily have been dealing with another tragedy here inNorth Wales. It is highly likely that had there been anyone in the property when this cylinder exploded that they would have suffered fatal blast and burn injuries This is not the first incident of this type in the region, we have previous incidents that have resulted in serious injury and tragically the loss of life.
"Behavior of this nature not only put the lives of the occupants at risk but also endanger neighbours and of course firefighters tackling the fire. We cannot state strongly enough how important it is to follow the safety instructions given to patients who require oxygen in their treatment and never smoke when it is in use or in the vicinity where cylinders and associated equipment are used or stored. Cylinders should never be kept near naked flames, heaters or combustible materials."
Smoke alarms save lives - to find out more about fire safety and have free smoke alarms fitted in your home, register for a free home fire safety check by visiting www.nwales-fireservice.org.uk or call our bilingual 24 hour hotline free on 0800 169 1234.