A WOMAN turned away a fire crew offering her a free home safety check ... and then had a chip pan blaze at her home the next day, says a Kirklees councillor.
A major fire safety blitz in Slaithwaite is drawing to a close and it turns out some people refused to let firefighters in to make sure their homes were safe.
West Yorkshire Fire Authority chairman, Kirklees Clr Gordon Beever, said: "Although it has proved phenomenally successful, a handful of people still seem wary of allowing us into their homes.
"A woman in Slaithwaite refused us entry only to suffer a chip pan fire the day after.
"I would stress that we only have residents' safety in mind. All our staff carry identification and there is no charge for our service.
"One of the main priorities has been to prioritise the over 60s and other vulnerable people at greater risk from fire such as those with mobility problems and young children."
The Slaithwaite station, in the heart of the Colne Valley, is changing from a full-time to a retained station.
It means part-time firefighters will respond to calls from their work or home and have to get to the station and set off on their call journey within five minutes.
As part of the changeover, extra fire service staff were drafted in to carry out safety inspections at homes and businesses in a bid to cut down fire risks.
Over the last few weeks the staff have:
* Carried out 1,545 free home fire safety checks.
* Fitted 1,437 free smoke detectors.
* Replaced 63 chip pans with safer, thermostatically-controlled deep fat fryers.
* Replaced 87 old electric blankets.