East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service logo
East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service logo

Wheat bag warning after fire in Eastbourne

Wheat bag warning after fire in Eastbourne
Wheat bag and microwave.jpg

A fire safety warning is being issued by East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service following a small fire in Eastbourne today (14th April).

At 11:13, we were called to attend a residential property on Hartfield Road, Eastbourne following reports of a fire in a kitchen area.

Crews from Eastbourne and Bexhill attended. Firefighters used two Breathing Apparatus and one Hose Reel Jet to extinguish the fire.  Three people were handed over in to the care of SECAMB after suffering from smoke inhalation.

The fire was caused by a wheat bag being overheated in a microwave. 

This incident shows that fires can affect any of us at any time and we do need to be extra vigilant when using a microwave.

If an electrical appliance catches fire, don't throw water on it

A working, well maintained smoke alarm will give you valuable minutes in the event of a fire and allow you time to escape.

Like any product, wheat bags should only be used in accordance with manufacturers instructions and must not be placed in a microwave at either too high a power setting and / or for too long a time.


  • Follow the manufacturer's instructions 
  • Only use as a heat pack for direct application to the body
  • Ensure your microwave turntable turns freely with the bag on it
  • Watch for over-use: a smell of burning or charring
  •  Leave to cool in a safe area and on a non-combustible surface like a kitchen sink



  • Use wheat bags as bed warmers
  • Overheat
  • Reheat bag until it has completely cooled (which may be two hours)
  • Leave in the microwave unattended when heating
  • Store the bag until it has cooled
  • Use the bag if you see evidence of problems


Book a home safety check

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service offer FREE Home Safety Visits to everyone across East Sussex.   

During the Home Safety Visit, advice will be given on how to make your home safer, what to do in the event of a fire and what to do if you are trapped by a fire. Free smoke alarms will also be fitted (if needed) with an explanation on how to maintain them correctly.

To find out more and to book a Home Safety Visit, click here or telephone: 0800 177 7069


Subscribe to our occasional newsletter

Find us on Twitter and Facebook and retweet or share our posts.

Please rate this page, was it:
Please rate this page!