Warning after mobile phone charger sparks Pulborough fire

A warning has gone out from firefighters after a mobile phone charger sparked a fire in Pulborough this morning.

Thursday, 25th March 2021, 5:40 pm

Fire officers say that a man awoke shortly after 1.30am to find his mobile phone malfunctioning accompanied by a smell of burning coming from his bed at his home in West Chiltington Road.

He had gone to sleep the previous evening and left his phone on charge on his bed.

A spokesman for West Sussex Fire and Rescue said: “The charging cable had overheated on the bedding and started a small fire.

The fire damaged charger

“Fortunately he was quickly able to extinguish the fire himself, but called for further advice from West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service this morning.”

The spokesman added: “Mobile phones should be placed on a flat, stable surface when being charged, and people should avoid leaving them plugged in overnight as they can overheat if left plugged in for prolonged periods of time.”

Station manager Jon Mays, who attended the property, said: “This individual had a very lucky escape and his quick thinking in the early hours of this morning prevented the fire from taking hold and spreading any further.

“But we would urge all residents not to leave their phones charging on their beds, sofas or underneath pillows. The devices can heat up exceptionally quickly, and when left on a combustible surface, this becomes a recipe for disaster.

“This particular fire seems to have begun within the cable itself, rather than the mobile phone.

“We would urge people to use the manufacturers’ supplied equipment and check the chargers that they are using to ensure they are not damaged, frayed or have exposed wires, as these can all lead to a fire beginning.

“Thankfully this resident had working smoke alarms fitted on each level of his property too, which serve as an early warning when a fire breaks out.”