Smoke alarm saves Walberton woman’s life

A WOMAN’S life was saved by a smoke alarm after a blaze started in her home.

The woman was able to escape safely from a fire in her flat at Walberton in the early hours of Wednesday morning because it was fitted with a working smoke alarm.

Firefighters from Arundel and Bognor rushed to the flat above the Holly Tree Pub in The Street at 1.36am, after a fire started in a tumble dryer on the 1st floor.

The occupier, a woman in her 40s, was asleep in bed when tea towels, left in the machine following a drying cycle, ignited.

On arrival firefighters wearing breathing apparatus entered the property and extinguished the blaze using a hose reel and covering jet.

The woman, suffering from mild smoke inhalation, was given oxygen therapy by the fire crew at the scene but did not need hospital treatment.

Incident commander from Arundel Fire Station, Richard Tout, said: “This is another example of where a working smoke alarm has potentially saved a life.

“The lady was asleep in bed and had the smoke alarm not alerted her, this fire could have had tragic consequences.

“Because the smoke alarm gave that vital early warning, the woman closed her internal doors, preventing the fire from spreading, and escaped safely.

“We would also like to remind people about the danger of leaving appliances like tumble dryers, washing machines or dishwashers running overnight or while out.

“They can be a potential fire risk because of their high wattage, friction and motors.”

West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service offers free home fire safety checks where firefighters visit homes by appointment to give safety advice and, where appropriate, fit smoke detectors or other specialist fire detection equipment. To request a home fire safety check call 0800 328 6487 or see