Elderly couple rescued after being trapped in bedroom as fire erupted in Cheselbourne

An elderly couple were rescued from their home. Credit: Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service

An elderly couple were rescued after they became trapped in their smoke-filled home in Cheselbourne.

The incident, which took place on 11 January, saw a couple freed from their first floor bedroom after an electrical fire broke out on the ground floor.

They were able to call 999 and firefighters from Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service (DWFRS) were dispatched to the scene.

The couple were told to block the gap below the door with a blanket and hold wet towels over their faces to protect them from smoke.

Four fire crews attended the property and were able to fit the couple with fire escape hoods. This allowed them to be brought to safety through the house.

Station manager Paul Webber said: “Despite what must have been a terrifying experience, this couple did everything they were told to by our Control room.

"This kept them safe until they could be rescued. Fire escape hoods have only been in use for a few years, but they were a vital part of bringing these people to safety.”

DWFRS is now urging people to think about what they would do in the event of a fire, including:

  • Have a bedtime routine, making sure internal doors are closed throughout the property.

  • Make sure you always have a phone available on whatever level of the home you are. If mobile phone signal isn’t very good, have an alternative way of raising the alarm, such as a landline.

  • If it’s safe to do so, get out, stay out and call 999.

  • If it’s not safe to do leave, get everyone into a room away from the fire, ideally with a window that can open. Close the door, and put something across the bottom to keep smoke out.

  • Have smoke alarms fitted on every level of the home and test them regularly.

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