Details have emerged of just how lucky a Staffordshire woman was to escape a blaze in her flat on Sunday morning - after leaving a pan burning on the stove and sleeping through a smoke alarm going of for some hours.
Firefighters are warning people of the dangers of cooking after drinking alcohol following the flat fire in Burntwood.
And they say neighbours should not hesitate to dial 999 if they hear a smoke alarm going off
One crew from Cannock and one from Chase Terrace were called to the Oak Lane property at around 9.30am yesterday.
Firefighters were alerted to the incident by a neighbour who said the smoke alarm had been sounding for a number of hours.
Crew members wearing breathing apparatus got into the property through a window that had been left open.
The whole flat was badly smoke damaged and the 23-year-old female occupant, who was asleep in bed, suffered smoke inhalation. She was treated at the scene by paramedics.
The woman had attempted to cook a pan of pasta on the hob at around 5am after returning home following a night out.
Station Manager Graham Mills said: “This lady had a very lucky escape – the situation could have had far more tragic consequences. I would urge people never to attempt to cook after a night out drinking. If you think you will be hungry when you get home, prepare a snack before you go out or stop off at a takeaway.
“I would also encourage people to look out for their neighbours. If you hear a smoke alarm going off in a neighbouring property for any length of time, don’t hesitate - call 999. It could literally save someone’s life.”