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Firefighters are urging people to take extra care when using candles during festivals and religious celebrations after an unattended candle is believed to be the cause of a flat fire on Alexandra Avenue in Harrow.
Part of a flat on the ground floor of a three-storey block was damaged by the fire. A woman left the affected flat before the Brigade arrived. She was suffering from smoke inhalation and taken to hospital by London Ambulance Service crews.
Six people and one child from neighbouring flats were led to safety from balconies by firefighters using ladders from flats on the first and second floors.
A London Fire Brigade spokesperson said: “The occupant smelt burning and discovered that the curtains were alight. They tried to extinguish the flames with a bucket of water but were unsuccessful. We’d urge anyone who finds a fire in their home to quickly get out, close any doors behind you and call 999.
"We also strongly recommend replacing wax candles for 'flameless' candles as there are so many benefits. However, if you are using wax candles, make sure you keep them away from materials that might catch fire – that's things like curtains, furniture, clothes and hair.”
The Brigade was called at 1134 and the fire was under control by 1218. Six fire engines and around 40 firefighters from Northolt, Harrow, Ruislip and Wembley fire stations attended the incident.