Firefighters break down door to rescue unconscious man from Hartlepool flat blaze
Firefighters broke down a front door to drag an unconscious man to safety from a flat blaze.
They have now issued a warning not to leave kitchen appliances unattended after confirming that the fire was started by overheated pans on a stove.
Twelve firefighters from three stations were called to the incident in a first-floor flat in Church Street, Hartlepool, at around 6.25pm on Wednesday night after the alarm was raised by a neighbour.
Watch manager Stuart Anderson, of Billingham Fire Station, said the fire could have had far more serious consequences
He said: “Two people wearing breathing apparatus broke down the door and rescued one male.
“The male was unconscious and the cause was burnt food stuffs.
“This could have been far more serious and we would urge people not to leave pans or other food that is cooking unattended.”
The man was immediately treated by ambulance paramedics and taken to hospital.
Crews from Hartlepool and Stockton fire stations also attended the incidents and took about 20 minutes to douse the smoke-logged property.
Watch manager Anderson added: “Thankfully there was only moderate smoke to deal with.
“But who is to say that there wasn’t a more serious fire there once they went through the door?”
The fire took place in a flat next door to Sheara’s takeaway.
The flat occupant’s condition is unknown.
A spokeswoman for North East Ambulance Service said: “We were called at 18.37 to a private property on Church Street, in Hartlepool. We dispatched one ambulance and took a patient to North Tees Hospital.”