Crews were called to reports of a house fire in Madison Street, Tunstall, at 7.03am today (Thursday March 8).
“This incident highlights just how important it is to have working smoke alarms on every level of your home. They will alert you to a fire at the earliest opportunity and give you vital extra minutes in which to escape, they really are life savers and this family are very lucky to have escaped this incident relatively unscathed."
Firefighters attended from Sandyford, Hanley and Newcastle-under-Lyme and found that two adults had managed to escape the home but six people (including five children) were trapped on the upper floors of the three storey home by thick smoke on the ground floor. Two firefighters wore breathing apparatus to enter the property and rescue the casualties still inside. The family were all suffering from smoke inhalation and were taken to Royal Stoke Hospital by ambulance for precautionary checks.
Crews used a Thermal Imaging Camera to identify the source of the fire and a hose reel jet to extinguish it. Positive Pressure Ventilation was used to clear the smoke from the home and a fire investigation found that the fire started in a tumble dryer in the kitchen.
While firefighters were travelling to the incident Fire Control gave fire survival advice to the occupants. They advised them to go to a safe place, shut the door, block the gap at the bottom of the door to prevent smoke entering, and open a window to access clean air.
Roy Daniels, Station Manager, said: “This fire has left the kitchen severely damaged and the incident is a stark warning never to leave appliances on overnight.
“Worryingly there were no working smoke alarms in the home so the fire was only discovered when one of the occupants got up and smelt smoke. When he realised there was a fire he alerted everyone, but those upstairs were unable to escape due to the thick smoke and they were rescued by firefighters.
“This incident highlights just how important it is to have working smoke alarms on every level of your home. They will alert you to a fire at the earliest opportunity and give you vital extra minutes in which to escape, they really are life savers and this family are very lucky to have escaped this incident relatively unscathed.
”Always make sure your appliances are safe to use and never leave them on overnight or while you’re out. Always register your appliances, keep them well maintained and make sure they are British Safety Approved.”
For more home safety information call the Service’s FREE Community Advice Team on 0800 0241 999 or visit the dedicated home safety page here.