Four fire engines and 21 firefighters and officers were called to a house fire on St Georges Road in Southwark this afternoon.
Part of a basement in a three floored house was damaged by fire. Neighbours heard a smoke alarm sounding and alerted the Brigade. Fortunately no injuries are reported.
Fire investigators believe the fire was accidental due to a portable heater placed too close to furniture.
A London Fire Brigade spokesperson said: "Yet again this incident shows how important it is to have working smoke alarms. Everyone should have at least one working smoke alarm in your hallways and landings and in any room where you: smoke, use candles or portable heaters and where electrical equipment is on or charging. They must be tested monthly. This will give the earliest warning if there is a fire in your home.
"People need to make sure their portable heaters are standing upright and kept well away from objects and materials that might cause a fire. Always unplug unused heaters and other electrical items and don’t leave them on overnight."
The Brigade’s advice for portable heaters
Secure heaters against a wall to stop them falling over, or fit wall-mounted heaters
Keep heaters away from clothes, curtain and furniture
Sit at least one metre away from a heater as it could set light to your clothes or chair, especially if you fall asleep
Always turn off your heater and allow it to cool before moving it
The Brigade was called at 1610 and the incident was over by 1720. Fire crews from Dowgate, Dockhead, Old Kent Road and Whitechapel fire stations attended the scene.