HEREFORD & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service (HWFRS) is urging residents to keep their chimneys clean to avoid fires starting in their homes.

The service has released a dramatic video, advising people how to protect their families against chimney fires.

Chimney fires accounted for over 4,200 incidents in England between April 2015 and March 2016.

People are advised to use a fire guard to protect against flying sparks from hot embers, make sure embers are properly put out before going to bed, keep chimneys and flues clean and well maintained, never burn rubbish and never use flammable liquids such as petrol or paraffin to light a fire.

Group commander Mick Cadman from HWFRS’s community risk department said: "To keep your home and family safe from fire this winter please ensure your chimney is swept regularly and that you use the right fuel with a correctly installed and maintained fire."

For further chimney safety advice and full details of chimney sweeps operating locally are listed at under the Safety and Advice heading.