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AUDIO: Cannabis plants on fire in my bedroom - hear S Yorks 999 call

A house in South Yorkshire in which a bedroom was converted into a cannabis factory

A house in South Yorkshire in which a bedroom was converted into a cannabis factory

A South Yorkshire woman called the fire service for help when cannabis plants in her bedroom caught fire - hear the actual call here,

Fire crews are dealing with an increase in blazes involving cannabis factories in South Yorkshire, new figures reveal.

So far this year, 6.7 per cent of the 75 accidental house fires dealt with involved cannabis set-ups.

To highlight the fire risks associated with growing cannabis, fire chiefs have released a 999 recording of a woman in Grimethorpe who called for help last month when the cannabis plants she was growing in her bedroom caught fire.

AUDIO: Listen to the actual 999 call - CLICK HERE.

South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue said blazes involving cannabis cultivations pose additional danger to firefighters because of the risk of live electrics, fire spread and structural collapse.

Fire Investigator Andy Strelczenie said: “So far this year around seven per cent of the house fires we’ve attended have turned out to be cannabis factories.

“This may not seem like a huge number but you need to consider these incidents are much more dangerous to deal with than standard house fires.

“From the outside it looks like a normal house but inside walls and ceilings have been ripped out, the electricity meter has been by-passed and the houses are full of different chemicals.

“All these elements add up to a much more hazardous environment for the responding fire crews and local residents.”

Insp Paul Ferguson, of South Yorkshire Police, said: “When we execute drugs warrants and find cannabis factories, we often see dangerous living conditions.

“It is amazing the lengths people will go to in order to grow cannabis, putting their life on the line to engage in criminal activity.”

In 2009, of 697 accidental fires 0.9 per cent were due to cannabis farms, in 2010 there were 665 accidental house fires, of which 1.8 per cent were due to cannabis.

In 2011, there were 619 accidental house fires, of which 1.8 per cent were cannabis related and in 2012 there were 626 house fires, of which 2.6 per cent were due to cannabis.

Police want residents with suspicions of homes being used to grow drugs to get in touch. Signs include condensation on windows and infrequent visitors.

 

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