Devastating restaurant fire highlights the risk of self-combusting tea towels

By Joe Lutrario contact

- Last updated on GMT

Devastating fire highlights the risk of self-combusting tea towels
Firefighters are warning restaurants about the danger posed by hot tea towels following a fire in a Nottinghamshire venue that caused £25,000 worth of damage.

Nobody was hurt in the blaze, which apparently started when hot tea towels from a tumble dryer were placed together in a basket. The Crimson Tree, in Sherwood, has been forced to close until repairs are complete.

A fire investigator said that there were around four incidents of this nature per year in the Nottingham area alone.

Tea towels and chef's cloths are often impregnated with fat, even after washing. Storing them closely packed together in a warm environment can cause an exothermic reaction, which can result in a fire.

Most commercial tumble driers have a cool-down function that should always be used.

Other ways to reduce the likelihood of fires include only using commercial grade appliances and detergents; and storing clean and dirty items separately in metal cabinets or lidded containers.

Related topics: Legislation

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