A demonstration of how explosive a chip pan fire can be, if water is thrown over the pan

Working smoke detectors are vital – Uckfield fire service

Four kitchen fires in four days highlight the importance of working smoke detectors.

More than half of accidental fires at home are started by cooking.

Many kitchen fires happen when people are not paying attention or they leave things unattended, writes Uckfield Fire Station watch manager Ian Ritchie.

Find out how to keep safe while you are cooking and what to do if a fire starts in your kitchen by visiting ESFRS Cooking Safety

Here’s the station’s round-up for the last fortnight

Tuesday, February 16: The occupants of two cars were lucky to escape with only minor injures after colliding on the A22 at Wych Cross at 7.15am. One crew from Uckfield attended to make the vehicles and scene safe.

Wednesday, February17: The towns bulk water carrier was called at 6.30pm to support ten crews in fighting a large fire at a school in Guestling near Hastings.

Thursday, February 18: Two Uckfield crews were mobilised at 7pm to reports of a fire at Palehouse Common where they found a large unattended bonfire which they extinguished with a hosereel.

Friday, February 19: Uckfield firefighters gained access to a house in Framfield at 4pm after a child became locked in.

Saturday, February 20: One crew attended a Buxted house at 1.45pm to release a tenager who had become locked in the bathroom.

Sunday, February 21: An Uckfield crew were called to deal with a dangerous chimney stack on a house in Newick at 1pm. They called in a high-reach aerial ladder platform from Brighton to assist with the removal of the structure.

At 1.20pm a call to a smell of burning at a Ridgewood property was attended by crews from Lewes and Heathfield where they found the cause to be a faulty boiler.

Tuesday, February 23: Crews from Uckfield and Hailsham attended a road traffic collision at 4.55pm on the A22 at Lower Dicker. Nobody was trapped but the incident caused severe tailbacks in both directions.

Thursday, February 25: The value of working smoke detectors was highlighted by an incident at a Buxted house at 12.10pm when an Uckfield crew received a call to a fire alarm sounding. On arrival they found a smoke filled property caused by an unattended frying pan and used a positive pressure ventilation fan to clear the smoke.

At 3.20pm the crew were called by the RSPCA to rescue two birds that were trapped in the chimney of an Uckfield property. Firefighters opened up an old fireplace to release the birds.

Friday, February 26: An Uckfield crew found themselves attending a road traffic collision with an East Grinstead crew at 4.05pm on the A22 at Ashurst Wood. One driver received minor injuries.

The danger of not having working smoke detectors was highlighted at 9.40pm when two Uckfield crews were called to a fire in a flat in the New Town area after the occupier fell asleep with a chip pan on the hob.

The kitchen was badly damaged and the rest of the flat sustained smoke damage. A smoke detector was fitted in the premises but was not working.

Sunday, February 28: Crews from Uckfield and Crowborough attended a call to a fire in an oven at a Wych Cross hotel at 10.20am. The fire was out when crews arrived.

Monday, February 29: Another incident involving a pan of oil was attended at a Buxted care home at 1pm. Crews from Uckfield and Heathfield attended and used a fire blanket to deal with the incident.

During the past fortnight Uckfield firefighters have also attended calls to fire alarms sounding in Uckfield, Ridgewood, Forest Row and Hadlow Down.

Home safety visits, designed to raise awareness of safety matters in the home, are always available across the local communities. These visits include the fitting of free smoke alarms where required and are undertaken by firefighters from your local fire station.

For free home safety advice ring 0800 177 7069 or visit Home Safety Visits

UckfieldNews.com looks back to:

See what NOT to do with a chip pan fire


Firefighters showed what NOT to do in the event of a chip pan fire at last December’s Uckfield late-night shopping event.

Never throw water into the pan and never be tempted to cover it with a damp cloth, they said. Get out of the house and call the fire service.

Uckfield firefighters’ demonstration, captured in our dramatic video, formed part of our coverage of late-night shopping. See here

See also:

Off-peak blockade on the Uckfield rail line

New season’s stock arriving at Cole’s

Thinking about acupuncture? Why not try these Uckfield businesses

UckfieldNews.com offers value for money advertising – and  more

Share this story

Sign up to receive daily news alerts

I'd like to receive updates every: