Tea Towels Cause Peterborough Pub Fire
9 February 2015, 10:20
One crew from Stanground and one crew from Dogsthorpe were called to a fire in a pub in Oundle Road, Orton Longueville.
The premises was evacuated before the fire service arrived.
Two firefighters wearing breathing apparatus used a hose reel and jet to extinguish a fire. Positive pressure ventilation fans were used to clear the smoke.
Watch Commander Darren Thompson said: "When the crew arrived, they could smell burnt oil, similar to that of a kitchen fire. A small fire was located on the first floor in a utility room, which turned out to be a pile of washed, dried and folded tea towels that had been smouldering for a number of hours.
"It is believed that the tea towels, which had been exposed to kitchen oils and grease, were folded while hot, causing them to self-heat and a fire to start.
"Although this type of fire is rare, we would like to remind those in the catering industry to ensure they wash towels correctly to remove all traces of fats and oils and therefore minimise the risk of this type of incident.
"It is also very important to remind all business and homeowners to call the fire service if their alarm does activate and they discover the signs of a fire."
Crews returned to their stations by 9am.