Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service chiefs have warned people could use the option or wood burners as an alternative to electric and gas heating as the cost of living crisis continues to hit.
They called on the public to have their chimneys swept and to understand the dangers of using them – and to use clean, appropriate quality fuel.
Chimney fires have slowly declined, with figures showing more than 40% of chimney fires in England occur in the three months from January to March.
However, this winter more people are likely to turn to using wood-burning stoves and open fires to stay warm, as the cost of electricity and gas is expected to continue to climb.
Deputy Chief Fire Officer Glynn Luznyj said: ‘It may seem strange to encourage people to have their chimneys swept at this time of year, but the idea is to book a swept now before you go. having to use it when temperatures drop.
“Chimney fires can be devastating and life-threatening, but with regular inspection and cleaning these fires can be prevented. It is important that people use a licensed chimney sweep and the National Association of Chimney Sweeps has a helpful website for finding local, licensed chimney sweeps.
“There are also other simple safety precautions to take to make sure you have working smoke detectors and a carbon monoxide detector, as these types of fires require proper ventilation.
“It doesn’t take much effort, but it could potentially save your life and that of your family.”