A unit complex in Red Hill caught fire last night, after the chimney of an open fireplace ignited.

The blaze has sparked warnings from the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service urging people to take care as winter approaches.

Amity Neumann reports.


The nights are cooling down, and people are looking for ways to warm up.

And many don’t stop to think about the dangers of using old heating appliances.

It’s the busiest time of year for the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service.

Trevor Stark, Station Officer QFRS: “We do turn out and respond to more structural fires this time of year due to the increase in fireplaces, electric blankets and heaters.”

Kidsafe Queensland says during winter bar heaters are the most dangerous appliance in the home.

Susan Teerds, CEO Kidsafe QLD: “Anyone with a bar heater should really unplug it, cut the plug top off and throw it in the bin.”

Electrical goods retailers say they’re also warning customers before buying them.

Kimberlyn Rosero, Sales Assistant: “We tell customers that they are not as safe in comparison to the other heaters.”

In Queensland last year, heating systems were blamed for starting nearly 80 house fires, with more than half of these occuring during the winter months.

But it’s not just heaters putting people in danger, firies are urging residents to follow a few other tips around the home this winter.

Trevor Stark, Station Officer RFRS: “Electric blankets checked by a registered electrician. When it comes to fire places, have the chimneys cleaned before use of each year.”

And knowing your emergency evacuation plan could help save a life.

Amity Neumann, QUT News.