Woman overcome by smoke after pan blaze in Sunderland

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NEIGHBOURS helped save a Wearside woman from her smoke-filled home.

Residents in Warwick Street became concerned when they heard an alarm going off in one of the houses at about 10pm on Wednesday and called 999.

While waiting for fire crews, the neighbours tried to alert the householder by banging on the door and trying to gain entry, but were unsuccessful.

Firefighters from Fulwell Station arrived on the scene, forced their way into the house and found the occupant, a woman in her 40s, overcome by smoke in the living room.

She was carried out of the house, where she was given first aid by paramedics.

Crew manager Steve Bewick, said: “It looks like she had put a pan on to cook and then fell asleep. The smoke alarm had activated, but for some reason didn’t wake her. She may have already been overcome by the smoke.

“The fire itself was quite small, but the property was heavily smoke-logged.

“She was very lucky indeed. The neighbours on both sides were very diligent in investigating the alarm and it shows how important having a smoke alarm is.”

Crew manager Bewick said the rescue was hampered by the amount of vehicles parked in the streets.

He said: “They are very narrow streets and all the cars were double parked. We were first there and couldn’t get the machine down the street, we had to jump out and run down to the house, then radio to the other crews to come a different way.”