Jun 27 2012 By David Baker
AN ELDERLY man was rescued from a blaze at his home after a fire was thought to be started by a match being discarded in a wicker bin.
Ten firefighters wearing breathing apparatus rescued the man yesterday (June 26), who was suffering from smoke inhalation and burns, after the house fire broke out in Chaplin Road, Willesden.
Another man, who was in bed in the attic when the fire began at around 2am on Tuesday, escaped from the house before firefighters arrived on the scene, but was unable to get to the elderly man downstairs because of the smoke.
A room on the ground floor of the house was damaged by the fire and there was smoke damage throughout the property.
The elderly man was taken to hospital but has since been released.
The Brigade was called at 0230 and the fire was brought under control by 0257. Two fire engines and ten firefighters from Willesden fire station were at the scene.
Crew Manager Lee Harris from Willesden fire station said: “We had previously fitted three smoke alarms inside the house, which alerted the man who was up in the attic to the blaze. He tried to rescue the elderly man from the ground floor of the house but the smoke was too intense so he was forced to escape and call the Brigade.
“Had we not fitted the smoke alarms there’s a strong chance he might not have woken up until it was too late.
“If you’ve not got a smoke alarm, I’d urge you to get one today it might end up saving your life.”
The Brigade’s fire investigators were called to the scene and at this stage they believe the fire was caused by a match that had been thrown into a wicker bin.
A spokesperson for the Brigade added: “It’s vital you ensure matches are completely out before you dispose of them. If in doubt, run them under a tap to ensure there’s no risk of them starting a fire.”