Unattended Cooking Sparks Flat Fire

An unattended cooking pan caused a fire in an eight-storey block of flats in central Southampton this morning (October 15th).

A passer-by spotted smoke issuing from the Empire View block on West Park Road just before 10.30am.

Crews from across Southampton and Eastleigh attended and found the fire in the kitchen of the third-floor flat.

The fire was extinguished by 11am and no-one was hurt in the incident.

Group Manager Jason Avery said:

"We have dealt with a number of fires in high-rise premises in Southampton recently that have involved cooking left unattended.

"Thankfully, none of these have escalated into a really serious fire but these type of incident are always preventable.

"Fires in high-rise buildings put a great strain on the fire service's resources and I would urge people to be more attentive when cooking to prevent this type of incident occurring."

Following the call from the passer-by, the alarm was also raised by a neighbour in the flats who heard a smoke alarm activating.

Firefighters from St Mary's, Hightown, Redbridge, Romsey and Eastleigh tackled the fire.

Group Manager Avery added:

"The smoke alarm helped provide early warning to this fire and all homes should ensure they have a working alarm, which is tested once a week.

"When it comes to cooking, pans should be taken off the heat if people have to leave the kitchen.

"Otherwise try not to get distracted when cooking and don't start cooking if you have been drinking alcohol  as it can easily get forgotten."

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