THREE people have died in house fires in Castellon Province so far this year.
The number of blazes due to electrical faults and other domestic accidents has shot up by 25% to a total of 140 so far.
Seven of these have caused personal injuries, with three people losing their lives mainly due to smoke inhalation.
The figures are particularly worrying given that the worst time of year for house fires is usually the winter, with faulty gas heaters and sparks from open fires as the main culprits.
In fact, at this stage last year there had been 107 house blazes throughout the northern province but none of which with personal injuries reported.
The latest tragedy struck at the weekend, when a 64-year-old man lost his life and another was critically injured in a house fire in the La Plana area of Castellon city.
This case in particular has been placed under police investigation, as it is as yet unknown whether the fatal victim was killed in the fire or died beforehand.
Previous cases this year involved an 80-year-old man who was found burned to death in his country home in Cabanes, and an 89-year-old who died from intoxication due to smoke inhalation three days after his house in Torreblanca caught fire.
The Castellon fire department has launched a campaign to raise awareness among residents about the threat of fires at urbanisations, country homes and access roads in or near forest areas.
Up to 5,000 leaflets in English, Spanish and Valenciano will be handed out to homeowners with information about how to avoid starting fires and what to do if one occurs.