Fire bosses warned of the potentially fatal danger of indoor heaters as coronavirus restrictions and the winter weather means people spending more time indoors.

Earlier this month flames ripped through a house on Brewery Road, Plumstead, after a halogen heater was left too close to clothing.

Two women and a baby, who taken to hospital and discharged the next day, were treated for smoke inhalation.

As working from home continues on a much wider scale than ever before, it is feared there could be a spike in similar incidents.

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Charlie Pugsley, Deputy Assistant Commissioner, said: "Fires involving heaters like this are all too common and have sadly claimed 13 lives in the last five years.

“You won't meet that deadline if your desk goes up in flames. "Whether you're set up to work from your dining room table, working on your sofa or have a home office, it's important that you stay warm, but also take every precaution to stay safe this winter.

"Sitting in one place for a period of time can make you feel cold and portable heaters can be a good way to stay warm without heating your entire home, but it's important to take a minute to consider how safe your workspace really is.

"If you have a heater under your desk or your paperwork leaning up against them, you could be putting yourself, your home and your family at risk."

According to a new study, the average household energy bill could climb by £107 this winter for those working from home five days a week.

In the last five years portable heaters have caused more than 700 blazes in London alone, injuring more than 140 casualties.

It is feared that there could be a spike in blazes as residents turn to cheaper ways to heat their homes, without properly taking into account potential risks, the London Fire Brigade warned.

Portable heaters are one of the most common alternatives to turning on the heating that are used to stay warm while working in one room, but can be dangerous if not used properly.

More than half of working Londoners were doing so from home earlier this year when lockdown began and many are preparing to continue to do so into the New Year, according to ONS figures.

As a result, it is likely the added time at home could mean the heating will be on for longer, according to the brigade.

Fires in the capital involving heaters, which start in the afternoon between 12pm and 5pm, have almost doubled this year compared to the same period last year.