A Busy Day For The BFD: 2 Fires and a Horseback Riding Accident
By First Assistant Fire Chief Andrew Klein
November 12, 2018

Bedford FD units responded to reports of a brush fire to find that the homeowners had emptied their fireplace ashes next to the house, which then caught the outside of the house on fire. Our engine crews quickly knocked down the fire and checked for extension. Negative extension, so we ventilated the house to vacate all the smoke.

While returning to headquarters, we were redirected to an EMS call for a rider thrown from a horse.

Bedford finished the day with a second reported structure fire that turned out to be a outdoor fire pit and not a danger.

At the risk of providing advice after the horse has bolted - literally - here are some important tips for disposing of embers from fire places and fire pits now that fireplace season has started:

• Never leave an open fire unattended, and close the fireplace doors when you are done.

• Always wait 2-3 days after a fire is out and the ashes are completely cool before removing them.

• Always use a metal bucket to collect cooled ashes. NEVER put them in a combustible plastic or paper trash container and do not try to vacuum them up.

• Move the bucket outside and well away from the house and garage. Do NOT store ashes next to your house.

• Make sure EVERYONE who may potentially clean the fireplace or fire pit knows these rules - your cleaning service, helpful relatives, even house guests.

In addition, if your household uses a wood or coal burning fireplace it is important to have your chimney inspected/cleaned annually by a professional as well as having your fire alarms regularly checked.

Be safe this winter.

Units: 108,109,110,52-B2, 2042,2043,2047,2048
Mutual Aid: BHFD, MKFD
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