News release text
A man was taken to hospital suffering from smoke inhalation after a fire broke out in his home on New Year’s Day.
His neighbour phoned 999 after seeing him at the window, with smoke billowing out of his Thistle Road flat just before 4.30pm. Fire survival advice was given to the neighbour by Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) control room staff to relay to the occupant, who was trapped in his first floor bedroom.
Two fire engines were quickly on the scene but found that a garden ladder had been used to help the man escape from his window to safety. He was assessed by ambulance crews before being taken to hospital.
Meanwhile, firefighters in breathing apparatus had to force entry into the flat and used a high pressure hose reel to put the fire out. It is thought the blaze was started by an unattended candle falling from a unit in the entrance hall, setting fire to carpeting. After extinguishing the fire, crews used a positive pressure ventilation fan to clear the smoke.
Sheppey Watch Manager, Tony Fox said: “Always extinguish candles if you’re not in the room because once a fire starts, it can take hold quickly and spread even faster. Had the smoke alarms in the property been working, the man would have had an early warning to the blaze but unfortunately by the time he was alerted to the fire, he was trapped upstairs and his escape route was blocked.”
Tony added: “Fitting working smoke alarms on every floor of your home and testing them regularly should be your top resolution for 2014 - it could save your life.”
Fire crews will be visiting neighbouring properties giving free home fire safety advice but you can get in touch, so KFRS can give essential information tailored to your home, needs and lifestyle. It’s all free of charge – even the phone call. Call us today on 0800 923 7000, email contact details to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.saferwinter.info