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North Melbourne house fire caused by unattended incense

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27 May 2018
A house fire in North Melbourne overnight caused by incense left unattended has firefighters urging Melburnians to practice safe use of open flames.

Crews were called to the Howard St house at 21:18pm and arrived to find one of the home’s upstairs bedrooms alight.

Firefighters in Breathing Apparatus worked quickly to knock down the fire, stopping it from spreading to other areas of the house.

While all occupants self-evacuated before crews arrived, the fire is a timely reminder for all Victorians to know their fire escape plan and practice it regularly.

There are some very simple ways to help prevent a house fire including having a working smoke alarm. Visit www.mfb.vic.gov.au/Community to find out more.

Tips for safe use of open flames:

• The use of open flames should always be supervised.
Always extinguish cigarettes, candles, incense and oil burners before leaving home or going to sleep.
Keep curtains and other combustibles away from open flames at all times.
Ensure children and animals are a safe distance from candles, incense and oil burners. 
Only use candles, incense and oil burners on stable non-combustible surfaces.
Keep cigarettes, lighters and matches out of reach of children. 
Use heavy, high-sided ashtrays to prevent them tipping over and always properly extinguish cigarettes.

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The Australasian Fire and Emergency Services Authority Council (AFAC) recommends monthly testing of smoke alarms to ensure they are working correctly.

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