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Evacuation following flat block fire

Published
13.12.2017

Fire crews tackled a blaze in a block of flats in Stroud this morning which is believed to have been caused by a candle left unattended.

Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service (GFRS) were called to the fire at a block of flats in Chapel Street, Stroud at 6:15am.

Two fire engines from Stroud and one from Nailsworth attended. Firefighters in breathing apparatus used two hosereels to put out the fire. The fire caused extensive damage to the flat, as well as smoke damage to neighbouring properties.

The occupant of the flat where the fire started escaped without injury due to the early warning from the working smoke alarms throughout the premises. Other residents in the block of flats were led to safety by firefighters.

Crews brought the fire under control within the hour and are carrying out a reassurance campaign in the local area throughout the day. Crews will be giving fire safety advice, and reminding people of the dangers of candles.

It is believed that candles were the cause of the fire and GFRS would like to remind the public of the importance of making sure they are put out and never left unsupervised.

Fires involving candles happen when:

  • Candles are left unattended.
  • People fall asleep without putting candles out.
  • The wrong kind of candle holders are used
  • Candles come into contact close to clothing and furnishings.
  • Candles are knocked over by pets.

Andy Hermiston, deputy chief fire officer said: “This fire demonstrates the potentially devastating consequences of leaving a candle unattended or accidentally knocking one over.

“Credit has to go to the resident who noticed the smoke for raising the alarm, and to Stroud District Council, who manage the block of flats. Thanks to their fire alarm system all residents were able to evacuate safely with no injuries.”

Cllr Nigel Moor, cabinet member responsible for fire, said: “The quick response of our firefighters made sure that there were no casualties as a result of this fire.

“I would urge residents to be aware of the risks associated with candles in the home, to help prevent similar accidents occurring. They can brighten up a home, especially at this time of year, but should not be left unattended.”

For more information, please visit: www.glosfire.gov.uk for advice on how to stay safe in the home.

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