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Smoke alarms do save lives

Published: 9th August 2006

Every day firefighters see how smoke alarms have helped save residents' lives by alerting them to home fires and giving them time to escape. The story of 10 people who walked away from a fire, which started on the upper level of a large home, is one such case.

In the early hours of Saturday 6 August 2006, nine teenagers and an elderly person were asleep in a two-storey house at a town on the North Coast of NSW. A hard-wired smoke alarm on the upper level of the six-bedroom home sounded, alerting several of the teenagers. They found a room used as a study well alight and immediately alerted the remaining occupants of the house. Everyone escaped from the rear of the house to safety.

On arrival, NSW Fire Bridages crews were confronted with an advanced fire in the upper level of the brick house. The crews worked quickly to limit fire spread to one area of the upper level and also to protect an adjacent property which was threatened by fire. Their actions saved most of the premises from further structural damage and protected valuable contents throughout the house.

Ambulance officers assessed all occupants at the scene and determined that no further medical treatment was required. The occupants of both the house affected by fire and the adjacent property praised the quick and professional actions of the fire crews.

In NSW it is compulsory for all homes to have smoke alarms. Are you meeting the requirements? More information on Smoke alarms in the home