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Incident Date: 06 December 2015
AN 83-year-old woman was rescued from her flat by firefighters after fire broke out in her bedroom earlier today.
Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service has now issued a Christmas safety warning after the pensioner’s bedroom was found to be full of items which fuelled the fire.
Crew from Ashton and Stalybridge Fire Stations raced to the scene in Moss Terrace, Ashton-under-Lyne, just after 3am this morning after workers monitoring the woman’s lifeline alarm called 999 when the alarm went off but they could get no response from inside the ground floor flat.
Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service said crew could see the woman through the window as they arrived. She was in the bedroom of the ground floor property close to the fire.
Watch Officer Stephen Gribbon explained: “We could see her as soon as we pulled up outside. She was in the bedroom close to the fire. The crew raced around the front and broke the door down. They brought her out and lay her on the ground outside. At the same time we broke the window into her bedroom and started to tackle the fire.”
The woman was given immediate first aid and trauma care at the scene by specially trained firefighters. Paramedics from North West Ambulance Service arrived quickly afterwards and took over treatment of the woman, who was conscious and breathing but suffering from the effects of smoke inhalation. She was talking to crew in the back of the ambulance and later transferred to Tameside General Hospital.
Watch Officer Gribbon added: “The cause of the fire is not yet known but what we do know is that there was a lot of items in this woman’s bedroom. It could have been started by a candle or a discarded match or an electrical overload on the system.
“But whatever the cause of this fire – the safety message is simple. At this time of the year we all have more things in our homes as Christmas approaches – whether that is wrapping paper, cardboard boxes, presents or decorations. Please be very careful about the level of items you have in your house. Be mindful of overloading sockets and leaving lights and decorations on. And – the very best piece of advice anyone can give you – is to get a working smoke alarm. The alarm that went off in this home saved this woman’s life.”
For more home safety advice or to book a Safe and Well Check for an elderly neighbour or friend or a Home Safety Check in any home in Greater Manchester – please see the website www.manchesterfire.gov.uk