Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus rescued an elderly man from a house fire on Chaplin Road in Willesden, NW2, in the early hours of this morning. The man was suffering from smoke inhalation and burns and was taken to hospital by ambulance. Another man escaped from the house before the firefighters arrived on the scene.
The man who escaped was in bed in an attic room; the man who was rescued was in a ground floor bedroom.
Crew Manager Lee Harris from Willesden fire station said: “We had previously fitted three smoke alarms inside the house, which alerted the man who was up in the attic to the blaze. He tried to rescue the elderly man from the ground floor of the house but the smoke was too intense so he was forced to escape and call the Brigade. Had we not fitted the smoke alarms there’s a strong chance he might not have woken up until it was too late.
"If you’ve not got a smoke alarm, I’d urge you to get one today it might end up saving your life.”
A room on the ground floor of the house was damaged by the fire and there was smoke damage throughout the property.
The Brigade was called at 0230 and the fire was brought under control by 0257. Two fire engines and ten firefighters from Willesden fire station were at the scene.
The Brigade’s fire investigators were called to the scene and at this stage they believe the fire was caused by a match that had been thrown into a wicker bin. A spokesperson for the Brigade said: “It’s vital you ensure matches are completely out before you dispose of them. If in doubt, run them under a tap to ensure there’s no risk of them starting a fire.”
The Brigade offers free home fire safety visits, where firefighters visit peoples’ homes and offer advice on how to prevent fires. They will also fit free smoke alarms where needed. The Brigade targets home fire safety visits at people and places where there is a higher risk of fire. This includes older people, especially those living alone, those with vision and hearing problems, mental health service users and those with drug or alcohol problems.
If you would like to receive a free home fire safety visit, or you know someone who would benefit from one, you can contact the Brigade for free on 0800 028 44 28 or book a visit on the Brigade's website.