A smoke alarm fitted by firefighters helped save the lives of a family whose house was engulfed by smoke.
The fire is believed to have started outside the house on Manor Hall, Leyton in the early hours of this morning. The smoke entered the ground floor hallway causing the smoke alarm to sound and wake the family up.
Firefighters arrived within three minutes and rescued two boys from the stairwell. The father, grandmother and a girl left the building before the Brigade arrived. The two boys were suffering from slight smoke inhalation and were taken to hospital by London Ambulance Service crews.
Police are treating the fire as suspicious and officers from Waltham Forest are investigating. They urged anyone with any information about the incident to contact DC John Ludwig on 0203 276 0971. If you wish to remain anonymous call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Richard Squire, Fire Borough Commander for Waltham Forest said:
“We have attended a number of fires involving discarded mattresses which have spread to properties and endangered lives. We have raised this issue with the police and council and initiatives have been put in place, like a free collection service for bulky items.
"Fire related crime can have a devastating affect on local communities and puts people’s lives at risk. Not only that, arson incidents are a drain on our valuable resources. We work closely with the police to help bring arsonists to book."
Watch Manager Colin Digby at Leyton Fire Station said:
“We arrived really quickly and crews wearing breathing apparatus rescued two boys from the stairwell. The Brigade had carried out a home fire safety visit at this address a little over a year ago and without the smoke alarm we fitted at the time this incident could have been a lot worse.
“It's really important that everyone has at least one working smoke alarm in their home. As shown in this case, it gives you a vital early warning of a fire.”
The Brigade was called at 0222 and the fire was under control by 0248. Two fire engines and 10 firefighters from Leyton Fire Station attended the scene.
If you would like more information on fire safety or how to book a home fire safety visit please go to http://www.london-fire.gov.uk/SafetyAtHome.asp.
The fire is believed to have started as a result of a discarded mattress. Police would like to remind residents that if they need a mattress or other bulky items disposed of, to call Waltham Forest direct on 020 8496 3000.
The bulky collection is a free collection service for residential properties.
For more information please visit http://www.walthamforest.gov.uk/Pages/Services/Refuse-household-waste-special-collections-for-large-items.aspx
You can also take certain items along to local household waste recycling centre. To find out where your nearest household waste recycling centre is please visit http://www.walthamforest.gov.uk/Pages/Services/Recycling-sites.aspx