Fire in Belsize Park sheltered housing block 'caused by cigarette'
PUBLISHED: 12:48 12 February 2016 | UPDATED: 12:48 12 February 2016
A partially sighted man was led to safety by firefighters after a fire broke out in a sheltered housing block in Belsize Park yesterday evening.
The other twenty nine residents had evacuated their properties in Parkhill Road by the time the fire brigade arrived.
London fire brigade said that a smoke alarm alerted residents to the fire, which apparently gutted the ground floor refuse room where it started.
Four fire engines and around 21 firefighters and officers from Kentish Town, West Hampstead and Holloway fire stations attended the incident.
The brigade was called at 18.45 and the fire was under control by 20.03.
Initial investigations suggest that the fire was caused by a cigarette which had not been properly extinguished.
A London Fire Brigade spokesperson said: “If you are a smoker it is vital that you take extra care. Fires caused by smoking materials - including cigarettes, roll-ups, cigars and pipe tobacco - result in more deaths than any other type of fire. Around three fires a day in London are linked to smoking and half of accidental fire deaths were related to careless disposal of cigarettes.
“It’s absolutely vital you ensure your cigarette is completely out when you’ve finished smoking it. If you don’t, you risk causing a fire which could destroy not only your home, but also your life.”