News release text
A wheelchair bound man had a lucky escape last night (Wednesday), after fire broke out in his Sheerness home.
Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) received a 999 call from the alarm monitoring company after the smoke alarms in the main corridor sounded at 7.40pm.
Firefighters arrived within seven minutes of receiving the call to find the man, in his late 60’s, unable to escape from his smoke filled flat. They carried out a snatch rescue taking him to the safety of a communal area and offered him oxygen therapy.
Sheppey Watch Manager, Andy Bridger-Smart, said: "The man told us he had been smoking and in a moment’s distraction put a lit cigarette into a metal waste bin causing the contents to catch light.
“The smoke from the small fire caused the smoke alarms fitted in November 2012 by KFRS firefighters to sound, before activating the main alarm system in the communal corridor.
“Fortunately, this was a fairly minor incident and the man escaped unhurt with very little damage to his home, once again proving that smoke alarms really are worth their weight in gold.”
He was given precautionary checks by ambulance crews before being allowed to return to his flat.
Andy added: “If you are a smoker, when you put it out, make sure it really is out.
“We offer a range of free services to help keep you safer in your home. Get in touch with us, and we will talk through the risks you face – some of which you may not have thought of. By having this free, confidential conversation, we can plan how we can help you. All our services are free of charge and we offer special products for people with hearing, sight and mobility problems.”
Call KFRS (free of charge from landlines) on 0800 923 7000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org