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E-cigarette charger fire warning issued

Fire damaged e-cigarette charger Credit: Cumbria County Council

E-smokers are being urged to unplug chargers when their cigarettes are powered up following a fire at a flat in Kendal.

The fire, which started as a result of a charger being left in and switched on at the socket, caused significant burning to the charger, clothes and a chest of drawers.

Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service said it was only due to the prompt actions of the occupier that the fire was quickly extinguished.

It is estimated that over 100 fires started in the UK last year due to e-cigarette chargers.

“Chargers such as these burn out very easily and people need to remember to switch them off once their device is fully charged. If the flat had been unoccupied at the time of ignition the incident would have been far more serious.”

– Jim Onions, Chief Fire Officer, Cumbria Fire & Rescue Service

Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service is urging e-cigarette smokers to take the following precautions.

  • Ensure they are using the correct USB charger or adaptor for the battery
  • Check there are specific instructions with the product to give guidance on recharging and how long to charge for.
  • Don’t leave electronic cigarette battery cells unattended whilst they are charging
  • Remove batteries from the charger immediately when the light turns green
  • Turn off and unplug electronic cigarette battery cells that are charging before you go to bed.
  • Always charge the battery on a fire retardant surface
  • Discontinue using if the battery or cables become damaged, or if the battery becomes hot or changes shape or begins to smell.


Union says 213 probation jobs are at risk

Union officials claim 123 jobs are under threat at the probation service in Cumbria and Lancashire.

The union, NAPO, says it's been told that the cuts will be made over the next 12 months by the private company, Sodexo, which has taken over part of the service.

The company says:

"We are in the process of sharing our future plans with employees...given that we are formally consulting on these plans it would be inappropriate to comment further."

UPDATE: ward 9 still closed at Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary

Credit: ITV Border

NHS Dumfries and Galloway has announced that there have been no new cases of norovirus at Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary today.

But it says Ward 9 remains closed with routine visiting still suspended, as it attempts to control the infection.

“There have been no new cases of Norovirus infection reported at Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary today. Infection Control measures remain enhanced, and staff are asked to remain vigilant to the possibility of further cases developing on other wards or being admitted directly into hospital from the community.”

“Ward 9 remains closed to admissions and transfers, and routine visiting to this ward has been temporarily suspended.”

– Spokesperson, NHS Dumfries & Galloway said: “There have been no new cases of Norovirus

The mystery of Penrith's elephant to be revealed

The tooth was first found in 1921 Credit: Eden District Council

Tests could soon reveal the age of an elephant's tooth that was excavated at Penrith Castle almost a century ago.

First found in the moat bottom below the north east of the castle in 1921, the tooth has only ever been viewed as a curiosity, and not as an artefact of historical significance.

But now, curator Dr Sydney Chapman believes dating it could provide evidence of the Castle's history, including what kind of people once lived there.

“A medieval date might suggest an object once owned by a person of high status associated with the Castle, and we anticipate Richard, Duke of Gloucester being proposed as a candidate if the date fits.

The Middle Ages saw a cult of relics and fabulous objects with which archaeologists recently linked the finding of an elephant’s bone in Chester.

A more modern date, however, is likely to result in more mundane solutions, a link with a travelling circus being high on the list”.

– Dr. Sydney Chapman, Curator


RMT calls for re-nationalisation of rail services

Rail workers in Carlisle took part in day of action this morning, calling for the re-nationalisation of rail services in the North.

It was part of a region wide campaign in response to the news that German, Dutch, and French state railways had been shortlisted for the Northern Rail franchise.

But a spokesperson for the Department of Transport said the move was a step towards the creation of a northern powerhouse for the UK economy.

"The publication of the invitations to tender is the first step in the transformation of train travel between the northern cities. It is also a significant step in the creation of a northern powerhouse for the UK economy."

– Spokesperson, Department of Transport

Mr Bruce wins the King's ransom

Mr Bruce celebrating his win Credit: ITV Border

A great grandfather from Penrith is hoping to go on the holiday of a life time after winning a share of the Lotto jackpot on Wednesday.

Robert Bruce was one of three Lotto players to win £727,308 after matching all six main numbers.

The 85-year-old, who is originally from Kirkcaldy but moved to Penrith in 1967, says he is still in shock over his win. He plans to use the money to go on a family cruise.

“The first thing I will be doing is treating my family. I’ve always wanted to go on a family cruise so this could be my chance to make that dream a reality.

“I have to keep pinching myself and telling myself this is really happening and that my family and I have really won the lottery!”

– Robert Bruce
Credit: ITV Border

Team GB off to strong start

Team GB got off to a strong start last night as the Women's Ice Hockey World Championship kicked off at Dumfries Ice Bowl.

They beat New Zealand 8-1 in their opening match, a positive start to their campaign.

And the team's coaches, who are twin sisters, want the winning streak to continue, claiming that there's only one medal that they're targeting in this year's tournament.

Other results from the day included Poland winning 10-3 against Croatia, and Kazakhstan beating Korea 2-0.

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