Essex County Fire and Rescue Service


Man rescued after kitchen fire

Elmstead Road, Colchester
16/10/2020 @ 09:17
Incident Number: 132801
In attendance: 1 x Colchester, 1 x Wivenhoe, 1 x Clacton

Firefighters rescued a man from a flat fire in Colchester this morning after neighbours heard his smoke alarms going off.

We were called to Elmstead Road, Colchester just after 9:15am to reports of smoke alarms going off.

On arrival, crews entered a third floor flat which was heavily smoke logged wearing Breathing Apparatus and found a fire in the kitchen.

Firefighters rescued a man who was asleep in another room and gave him oxygen therapy. He was left in the care of the Ambulance Service.

Crews extinguished the fire by 9:56am and believe it was caused by cooking left unattended in the oven.

Watch Manager Richard Lark from Colchester Fire Station said: “Thankfully this man had working smoke alarms that alerted his neighbours. I’d like to praise the neighbours for acting quickly when hearing smoke alarms going off and calling us, they helped to save their neighbour’s life. If you hear someone’s smoke alarms going off, always call 999, even if you think others might have done so already.

“Never leave cooking unattended and don’t cook when you’re tired.”

More than half of accidental fires at home are started by cooking - follow our cooking safety advice to stay safe in your kitchen:

  • Avoid leaving children in the kitchen alone when cooking on the hob.  Keep matches and saucepan handles out of their reach to keep them safe
  • Make sure saucepan handles don’t stick out – so they don’t get knocked off the stove
  • Take care if you’re wearing loose clothing – this can easily catch fire
  • Keep tea towels and cloths away from the cooker and hob
  • Double check the cooker is off when you’ve finished cooking
  • Take care if you need to leave the kitchen whilst cooking, take pans off the heat or turn them down to avoid risk

Have you got working smoke alarms in your home?

Incidents like this show how important it is to have working smoke alarms in your home. They give you and others around you an early warning sign to fire, giving you time to get out of the house, stay out and call the fire service out.

If you or someone you know doesn’t have working smoke alarms, we can fit them for free during a home fire safety visit. Book a visit at

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