8 May 2014, 14:47
The fire was on the 5th floor of a 9 storey block of flats on Sterte Close early this morning.
Fire crews were called to the fire in Poole at 2:57am this morning.
The caller reported being unable to escape the flat.
Five fire engines and an aerial ladder platform attended; crews used four main lines and four sets of breathing apparatus to extinguish a fire in the lounge.
One man was treated at the scene for smoke inhalation.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
Incident Commander Dave Cooper said:
"The occupier was alerted to a serious fire in the lounge by his smoke alarm, he had a fire plan in place which at night meant that he closed the lounge and kitchen doors when he went to bed. This plan ensured that the fire was confined to the lounge and allowed him to escape this serious fire unharmed and he raised the alarm to alert others as he left the building."
Area Commander for Bournemouth and Poole, Tim Spring said:
"This incident really is a case of a home safety check saved a life. Martin took the advice give to him by us and used it when faced with an emergency. Having got out of the flat his primary concern was for his neighbours. Martin received a free check from Dorset Fire and Rescue last September. The crew from Poole station fitted smoke alarms and discussed the importance of home safety with him. They discussed closing doors & the importance of good night time routine. When he went to bed, Martin closed the internal lounge door. This not only ensured the smoke spread was limited, it also allowed him extra time to escape from the property when the smoke alarm sounded. This incident could have been far worse, but I am delighted the work of the Poole crew has helped save this man's life."
The occupier, Martin Stevens said:
"The smoke detector went off and I knew that I had to get out! I had closed the lounge door as I had been advised to do when the fire service visited my home. I think that had I left the door open I would have lost my life. Having the detector fitted and an escape plan to work to made all the difference. I would advise anyone living in a high rise to have a Home safety check from the fire service."