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Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service - Preventing, Protecting, Responding

Smoke Alarms Alert Family of Five to Fire

08/05/2012

A family of five managed to escape a fire in their home on Huntingdon Road in Stapenhill on Saturday night thanks to working smoke alarms fitted by Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service giving them an early warning.

"This incident highlights how essential working smoke alarms are. Had this property not had them fitted we could have been dealing with a very tragic incident."

Station Manager Mick Daniels

A mother of three was awoken by the smoke alarms operating late on Saturday night and woke up her husband.

They fetched their three children into their bedroom and saw that flames were blocking their exit down the stairs. The man called 999 and was given fire survival advice by control however he decided to jump out of the window to try and help his family.

He sustained severe bruising from the jump however managed to push a trampoline up against the house, allowing his wife and three young children to jump to safety moments before the fire engines arrived.

Two crews from Burton and one from Swadlincote were alerted to the fire at just before midnight and on arrival four firefighters wearing breathing apparatus entered the house to tackle the fire using two hose reel jets.

The fire started in the electricity box and has been put down to faulty electrics. Station Manager Mick Daniels said: "This incident highlights how essential working smoke alarms are. Had this property not had them fitted we could have been dealing with a very tragic incident.

"Due to the early warning the smoke alarms provided, the couple were able to quickly gather their children and managed to escape the property via the window.

"We don’t encourage people to jump out of windows, as this can cause very serious and potentially fatal injuries, however we appreciate the occupants actions were to save his family and his quick-thinking utilising the trampoline meant his wife and children could jump and land relatively safely.

"The fire has caused severe damage to the ground floor of the property meaning the family are unable to return home at the moment. An electrical fire is not something that can be predicted so working smoke alarms really are essential in all homes as anyone could suffer an electrical fault."

The family have previously received a free Home Fire Risk Check from Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service where smoke alarms were fitted. Firefighters have been back to the area over the weekend to offer neighbours free Home Fire Risk Checks.