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Boy's early bedtime saves lives in Thamesmead maisonette fire
BEING sent to bed early proved to be a good thing for a Thamesmead child who spotted his home was on fire last night.
The 12-year-old boy raised the alarm after seeing flames creeping up a bedroom window of the maisonette in Coralline Walk at 9.30pm.
A neighbour then helped the family, of four children, their mother and their grandmother, to get out of the building before fire crews arrived.
Firefighters say the blaze was caused by a discarded cigarette on a balcony and the flames went through the windows into the kitchen and into a bedroom.
The kitchen and one bedroom inside the property were completely destroyed in the fire.
Watch manager Stewart Button, who was at the scene, said: “The maisonette was severely alight when we arrived, with flames coming out of the windows.
“The plastic window frames had melted, causing a lot of black smoke.
“It was a challenging job, but crews did very well to contain the fire and save the rest of the property.
“It is so important to fully extinguish your cigarettes and dispose of them safely. It is very lucky that no one was injured.”
It took the crews from Erith and Plumstead around an hour to bring the fire under control and they left the scene by around 12.30am this morning (September 19).
Around a quarter of the property was damaged by fire and there was also considerable smoke damage - it is currently uninhabitable.
The fire is not believed to have been deliberate.