News release text
Kent Fire and Rescue Service is praising the actions of residents and University of Kent staff following a fire in student accommodation this morning (Tuesday).
Four fire engines were called to Park Wood Road in Canterbury shortly before 4am after an extractor fan caught alight in a first floor bathroom.
On discovering the fire, a quick-thinking student raised the alarm and notified security staff. The court was immediately evacuated and a roll call was taken to ensure all students had got out of their properties safely.
Crews wearing breathing apparatus used hose reel jets to tackle the fire which had spread into the roof of the property. Once completed the firefighters then helped students retrieve items including laptops and phones.
Damage was restricted to two properties with 10 properties being evacuated in total. No injuries were reported and Kent University is helping affected students find alternative accommodation
Canterbury Watch Manager Mark Jones, who attended the incident, said: “I would like to highlight the planning shown by the University as all the students and staff knew exactly what to do once the fire was detected. We were able to concentrate our efforts on fighting the fire straight away knowing that all of the occupants had been safely evacuated and were out of harms way.
“I would also like to praise the work done by crews who worked tirelessly to keep damage to a minimum and then helped the students retrieve their possessions.”
Denise Everitt, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Kent said: “I'd like to congratulate the students for their swift response in alerting Campus Watch and the emergency services and for their positive and calm reaction to what was clearly a worrying and difficult situation.
“Also, special thanks to Kent Fire and Rescue Service and all the University staff involved, particularly from Estates and Kent Hospitality.”
The University will now wait for the official report from Kent Fire and Rescue Services and review to see if further precautionary measures are required.