Saved by alarm

The Timaru Herald - - FRONT PAGE -

The sharp hear­ing of neigh­bours might have saved the life of an Oa­maru cou­ple on Fri­day Morn­ing. South­ern Fire Com­mu­ni­ca­tions shift man­ager Daryl Ball said neigh­bours of a house on El­iz­a­beth Cres heard a smoke alarm and could smell smoke, de­spite the peo­ple in the house ap­par­ently not notic­ing the sound of the alarm. ‘‘The smoke alarm went off be­cause there was a mat­tress smoul­der­ing be­cause it was on fire’’, Ball said. The neigh­bours called the fire ser­vice, who sent two crews from Oa­maru, and the mat­tress was taken out of the house and doused with wa­ter. How­ever a crew had to re­turn to the scene not long later as the cen­tre of the mat­tress con­tin­ued to smoul­der, and it had to be fully ex­tin­guished. ‘‘This could have been some­thing very se­ri­ous, the smoke alarm has saved prop­erty if not life.’’ Ball said that the sit­u­a­tion could have turned out very dif­fer­ent ‘‘if they didn’t have a smoke alarm in the house’’.

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