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This article was reproduced with the kind permission
of the British Broadcasting Corporation



Friday, 23 November 2007, 12:59 GMT
Inquiry after fire in maisonettes

A fire that broke out in a ground floor bedroom in a two-storey block of maisonettes is being investigated by fire officers and Sussex Police.

The occupier of the Horsham flat was out when the blaze started on Friday.

Emergency crews said a neighbour in an upstairs flat discovered the fire when they smelled the smoke.

Neither of the flats had smoke alarms, Deputy District fire commander Mark Hayter said. He said other residents in the block of flats had a lucky escape.

This incident could have resulted in tragedy
Mark Hayter

"We would like to remind people of the dangers involved in not having a working smoke alarm installed in your house," he added.

"Had the upstairs occupant not been at home to discover the fire, this incident could have resulted in tragedy for the residents of this building."

Two fire engines were sent to the fire in the purpose-built block in Marlborough Close at 0850 GMT on Friday.

Fire officers will be carrying out a leaflet-drop to houses in the area this weekend, offering a free home fire safety check.