Worried wake up saves a life

A sweet seven-year-old saves her neighbour’s life after a worried wake up to a smoke alarm sounding.

A few weeks ago, Olivia Ramsay was having a living room slumber party with mum Samantha Breckon when she heard a smoke alarm going off.

Olivia woke her mam up and asked her to go and check all the smoke alarms in their home because she was worried.

The 31-year-old whizzed round the house to check if it was theirs but came up with nothing however Olivia wouldn’t let it lie and they assumed it must be a neighbours.

She’d recently had a school visit from firefighters who told her if you hear a smoke alarm going off for a while please call 999 as it could be an emergency.

They called Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service (TWFRS) at 5:22am to inform them off the smoke alarm going off at one of their neighbours houses.

Crews from Rainton Bridge, Washington and Farringdon Community Fire Stations were at the property in Shiney Row in Houghton Le Spring within two minutes.

At the property next door to Sam and Olivia, the kitchen was on fire and the occupier was asleep.

Thankfully Sam and Olivia had called the fire service in time so that the occupier could be rescued from his property.

He was checked over by paramedics and taken to hospital as a precaution.

Sam said “Its terrace houses on our street but next door are flats so I couldn’t be sure which one was going off.

“My two boys were asleep upstairs and didn’t hear a thing that night – sleeping safe and sound.

“I’m really proud of Olivia, if it wasn’t for her waking up who knows what could have happened.”

And today (Wednesday) one of TWFRS senior firefighters is thanking Olivia for her quick response to hearing a smoke alarm sounding.

Group Manager Steven Thomas, Head of Prevention and Education for TWFRS, said: “It’s great to know the school visits we deliver have a positive impact that children understand our potentially lifesaving safety messages and can act upon them when needed, to keep their families, friends and neighbours safe.

“Olivia’s quick response that day saved a life and we are grateful she called us and we were able to get to the property so quickly.

“I want to thank our fire control and crews who attended that night without their quick response who knows what could have happened.

“This incident is a reminder that it’s important that you test your smoke alarms regularly to make sure they are working in case of emergency.

“If you don’t have working smoke alarms or something doesn’t appear right, get in touch via our website and we can arrange a free safe and well visit.”

TWFRS fit smoke and heat detectors for free, you can request a Safe and Well Check, which includes the fitting of free smoke alarms and advice to protect your home from fire by calling TWFRS on their freephone number 0800 032 7777 or fill in their online form.