A SURPRISE Christmas present nearly resulted in disaster for one family.
Gemma Fryer, 31, of Fletcher’s Road, Broadwater, bought a bioethanol fire for her partner and attempted to put it together on Saturday afternoon.
Just minutes after the oil started burning, the flame got out of control and the fire service was called.
Mother-of-two, Gemma, said: “The flames got a lot higher and bigger and the front part of the fire started to catch alight and blistered. The oil started to tip on the carpet and it caught alight. By that time, I had already called the fire brigade.”
Fortunately, firefighters responded within minutes and helped to secure the fire, which left the carpet burned and the chimney breast blackened. Gemma’s father, who was in the house at the time, also played his part by covering the burning carpet with a wet towel.
The experience prompted Gemma to make others aware of the dangers of fires with Christmas coming up.
“I’m concerned about letting people know how dangerous the fires can be.
“It could have been a lot worse than it was.”
Bioethanol fires remove the need for a chimney as no smoke is given off. They are seen to be environmentally clean and safe if used correctly.
Gemma bought her fire from a seller on ebay for £100. She said she followed the instructions during the set-up and is communicating with them to secure a refund and compensation for the carpet.