Smoke alarm saves woman in house fire

A smoke alarm saved a young woman’s life in a house fire in Shrewsbury late last night (Tues)

Shrewsbury firefighters wearing breathing apparatus forced their way into the house in York Road, Harlescott, at 10.30pm when next door neighbours heard the sound of the smoke detector.

They rescued her from an upstairs bedroom where she had been sleeping.

Fire chiefs today said that if it wasn’t for the smoke alarm, the woman may have died. She was treated at the scene by paramedics for smoke inhalation.

A 61-year-old woman died earlier this week in a Market Drayton house fire when two smoke alarms failed to activate because the batteries had been removed.

“The comparison between these two fires is quite stark. In one a woman tragically died when there were no working smoke alarms. In this latest incident last night the householder survived because the alarm was raised due to the smoke alarm,” said Deputy Chief Fire Officer John Redmond.

“Shropshire Fire and Rescue Service along with brigades from all over the UK campaign tirelessly to get people to install smoke alarms in their homes because we know they save lives. They are cheap to buy and easy to install. Just do it. It is a lifesaving choice.”

“We also would like family, friends and neighbours to ensure that vulnerable and elderly people that they know do have smoke alarms.”

Watch Manager Phil Davies of Red Watch at Shrewsbury said: “Initially it wasn’t clear how many people may have been in the property but thankfully our crews managed to get in, carried out a thorough search of the premises and found the young lady in time before it was too late.”

A Service spokesperson added: “Three fire engines raced to the scene within minutes of the call being received by the Control staff and we are thankful that their actions along with the smoke detectors that alerted the neighbours undoubtedly saved the life of this young lady this evening.”

Crews attended from Shrewsbury Fire Station based at the Service’s St Michael’s Street site.

25th January, 2012