HOUSEHOLDERS have been urged to ensure they have working smoke alarms following a fire at a property in Cheadle.
Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service has made the appeal after six firefighters in breathing apparatus searched a bungalow in Lomond Road last Thursday, November 7, after it was initially believed the occupier was still in the property.
The fire was in a bedroom and is believed to have been started accidentally by smoking materials.
Tactical officer Mark Wilson said: “On arrival, three sets of firefighters in breathing apparatus immediately went into the property and to search for the occupier.
“Fortunately he had already left the building and was unharmed.
However we are very concerned that a smoke alarm fitted by Staffordshire Fire and Rescue in the past at the property had been removed.
“We would urge all householders to ensure they have smoke alarms fitted in their homes and that they regularly test the batteries work by pushing the button on the alarm.
“It is a very quick and simple task, but one which could save your life and those of your family, in the event of a fire.
“Removing the batteries, or removing an alarm itself, is an extremely risky thing to do.” Crews from Cheadle, Ipstones and Longton attended the incident, which occurred shortly after 6pm.
Firefighters used two hose reel jets and a covering jet to extinguish the fire. A fan was used to ventilate the property which was heavily smoke-logged.
The fire caused severe smoke damage to a bedroom. Fire crews left the scene at about 9.40pm.
The incident follows a tumble dryer fire at Blurton in the early hours of November 5. A family of six had a lucky escape as none of the smoke alarms in the house were working. The blaze caused significant damage to the kitchen.
Residents in the county are encouraged to book a free Home Fire Risk Check by calling Freephone 0800 0241 999. This involves firefighters or technicians visiting homes to fit smoke alarms, identify any fire risks and an escape route and discuss fire safety.