At approximately 3am on 11 April, Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service were called to a fire at Maxey Close, Shaw, Swindon.
Appliances from Westlea, Swindon and Stratton attended, along with specialist appliances.
Firefighting operations were led by Watch Manager Paul Jarmey, who commented that had it not been for the quick thinking and prompt actions of a neighbour in alerting the occupier (who was asleep upstairs) the incident had the potential of a tragic outcome.
He said that when the Fire Service arrived they found that the fire had become well established, involving a shed and a conservatory. It had also spread into the house on the ground floor, first floor and roof. This meant that firefighters had to act very quickly to prevent the fire from destroying the house and did this by using four breathing apparatus, high pressure hose reels and a main jet.
Police and a specialist Fire Investigation Officer from the Fire Service are working together to establish the cause of the fire and at this time arson cannot be ruled out.
Group Manager Perry Payne also attended the scene and said, "We are very grateful to the neighbour for alerting the occupier and calling us. I’m pleased the crews did a great job and were able to save the property. I am concerned that this incident could very easily have had such a different outcome. There was somebody asleep in their home and unaware of a serious and developing fire until woken by the neighbour. At this time we can’t rule out the possibility that this fire may have been started deliberately – and if that proves to be the case, it is only by immense good fortune that it didn’t result in the very worst of outcomes."
He added, "I can’t stress enough how important it is to have working smoke alarms in your home".
Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service advise that smoke alarms should be tested weekly. The service offer free home safety advice and can be contacted on 0800 3897849.