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Dog believed to have started Gravesend flat fire

13 February 2013

Firefighters have dealt with a fire at a flat in Gravesend – believed to have been started by a dog.

Crews were called to the blaze in a kitchen of a basement flat in Pier Road at 3.10pm today (13 February) after a neighbour spotted smoke coming out of a vent and raised the alarm.

Realising that the occupant was out and that two dogs were trapped inside, the neighbour let herself into the property and led the pets to safety, closing the internal doors behind her on the way out.

It is believed that the fire was caused by one of the dogs jumping up and turning on the electric hob. This is thought to have ignited an item on top of the stove, which then spread to the surrounding kitchen units.

Two fire engines attended the scene and crews wearing breathing apparatus extinguished the fire using a hose reel. The hob and the surrounding units were damaged by fire and heat, however smoke damage was contained to the kitchen and hallway of the property, due to the doors being closed.

Thames-side Watch Manager Vicki Brown said: “We never advise anyone to enter a property where there is a fire, as the toxic smoke can be deadly. On this occasion, the neighbour was extremely lucky and her kind-hearted actions probably saved the dogs’ lives, but at considerable risk to her own safety.”

For further advice on how to keep you, your family or a neighbour safe from fire call Kent Fire and Rescue Service for free on 0800 923 7000 or go to www.3breaths.info for further information.

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