A carelessly discarded cigarette has caused severe damage to a flat on Kings Street in Fenton, Stoke-on-Trent.
"We would encourage people to ensure that all cigarettes are fully out and ashes cooled before they are safely disposed of."
The emergency call was received at 3.19pm and four engines from Hanley and Longton attended the incident. Firefighters in breathing apparatus tackled the fire using hose reel jets.
The fire started due to a cigarette that had been put in an ash tray - the contents had then been emptied into a bin bag which had been left in the living room. The cigarette had then caused the bin bag and its contents to set on fire, whilst the occupier was out collecting her children from school.
Assistant Area Commander Glynn Luznyj said: “We would encourage people to ensure that all cigarettes are fully out and ashes cooled before they are safely disposed of. This incident highlights just how quickly and easily a fire can start and spread.”
The ground floor of the flat has been severely damaged by the fire. Firefighters remain at the scene.