City of Canning tops list of most house fires in Perth’s southern suburbs

Stock picture.
Stock picture.

CITY of Canning experienced the highest number of house fires among Perth’s southern suburbs in the past financial year, with insurer RAC urging homeowners to do everything to reduce the risk.

Forty deliberately lit or accidental fires occurred in the City of Canning in the past year, up from nine the previous year.

The Department of Fire and Emergency Services figures showed the number of house fires rose in each local government area bar Armadale, which fell by two, and Melville, which fell by 11.

RAC has seen a surge in the number of claims for serious house fires over the past four years, especially in winter and early spring.

RAC Insurance home claims manager Glen Walker observed nearly a 20 per cent increase in fire claims over the months of July, August and September between 2013 and 2016.

He urged people to reduce the risk at home.

“Flammable items being left too close to heaters, open fireplaces, candles, electric blankets and overloaded power boards are just some of the ways a house fire can start,” he said.

“Even dust build-up on power boards have sparked house fires here in WA.

“Recently we responded to a claim where an old electric blanket caught fire.

“Thankfully, the occupant was able escape the fire but there was still $130,000 damage caused to the home.”

He urged people to check smoke alarms are working and to unplug appliances when not in use.

Investing in a fire blanket or extinguisher can also help make the home safer, along with adequate insurance cover.

Local Government Area              2015-16       2016-17      TOTAL

South Perth                                        10              11              21
Victoria Park                                        9              30              39
Belmont                                             12              20              32
Canning                                             30              40              70
Gosnells                                             29              30              59
Armadale                                           32              30              62
Serpentine Jarrahdale                         6              7                13
Fremantle                                          13              21              34
Cockburn                                           20              32              52
Melville                                              34              23              57

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