News release text
Two Bullmastiff dogs have been safely rescued by firefighters following a fire in Chatham today (Friday).
Crews were called to White Road after a neighbour smelt smoke at 11.42am and phoned 999. Two fire engines from Medway arrived at the property within five minutes and were met with thick, black smoke billowing from the house.
Crew Manager, Kevin Chapman, said: “We could see the two dogs at the window, they were clearly terrified and struggling for air as the smoke layer was about three feet from the ceiling. Our breathing apparatus team climbed in through a window that had smashed due to the heat from the fire and opened another window, which enabled the dogs to jump out to safety.”
Crews used a hose reel jet to extinguish the fire and a special fan to clear the smoke from the house.
The fire is believed to have been started accidentally after the resident discarded a cigarette in the garden earlier in the day. It had been fuelled by rubbish stored against the back door and spread to the double glazing and internal side of the windows.
Kevin added: “There are some important safety messages to come from this incident; firstly, make sure cigarettes are completely stubbed out before you discard them. Secondly, please think carefully about where you store rubbish. As we’ve seen today, fires have the potential to become much larger. Fortunately it was detected early and extinguished swiftly by fire crews but it could have been a very different ending for these family pets.”
The fire caused heavy smoke damage to the kitchen and light smoke damage throughout the house. The kitchen window, curtains, UPVC doors and work surface were also damaged.
Crews fitted working smoke alarms in the property and gave fire safety advice to the occupant.