Firefighters are reminding residents to take extra care with candles following a fire that destroyed the first floor of a house in Maidstone.
Crews were called to the blaze in Loose Road just after 4pm on Thursday (7 January) to deal with a well-developed fire in a rear bedroom of the property. Crews wearing breathing apparatus tackled the blaze using a main jet and a hose reel. The fire caused extensive damage to the first floor of the property and the ground floor sustained smoke and water damage.
It is believed that the fire was caused by a candle that had been left unattended on the window sill, which had set light to a curtain and spread to the rest of the room.
The occupants of the property were alerted to the fire by a smoke alarm and were able to get out of the house safely and call for help.
Maidstone crew manager Andy Griffiths said: “This incident highlights just how vital it is to have working smoke alarms in your home to provide early warning in the event of a fire, which enabled the occupants to escape without injury. However, the property was unfortunately severely damaged as a result of this fire.
“I would urge residents to take extra care if using candles or tea lights – never leave them unattended and ensure they are placed in a proper holder on a heat proof surface, well away from clothing, curtains or any other ignitable materials. Always make sure they are fully out after use.”
For further safety advice and information about our free services call 0800 923 7000 (free from most landlines).