A grandmother has told how nine members of her family including a nine-month-old baby boy fled a blaze at their home on Sunday morning.
Zaida Bi, 48, had gone back to bed when she began coughing from smoke from a microwave oven which had caught fire in the three-storey property at Thomas Street, Thornton Lodge, Huddersfield
Fire crews from Huddersfield and Rastrick raced to the house at 9.35am and put ladders up to a flat roof on the first floor so the family could clamber down.
Zaida said: “I’m asthmatic. Smoke started coming and I started coughing. There was the smell of it as well. I got up straightaway.
“I shouted to everyone to get out onto the balcony which they did. It was all black smoke everywhere.”
Among those to be rescued were Zaida’s husband, Javid Iqbal, 58, husband and wife Salma, 26 and Naveed, 27, as well as other family members in their 20s and an 11-year-old child.
A 24-year-old member of the family, who didn’t want to be named, said: “It was very scary. I jumped off the balcony before the fire service arrived.
“We’ve had to move out of the house because of the damage. Fortunately we have family members who live on a nearby street so we have got accommodation. All the street is our family.”
All nine members were taken for a precautionary check at hospital but were then discharged.
Huddersfield Watch Commander Andy Rose said: “It seems something had caught fire in the microwave oven and created a lot of smoke which billowed through the house.
“When we arrived we put ladders up and they were all able to come down safely. They were taken to hospital for smoke inhalation but were discharged.
“It could have been a lot worse. The smoke had spread everywhere. There were two smoke alarms in the property but neither of them were working.”
West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service fits smoke alarms free. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 01274 682311 for more information.
In October 2015 West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service revealed that in the previous year smoke alarms failed to work in almost 300 West Yorkshire homes involved in fire. A further 261 had no smoke alarm at all. This means that, in total, nearly half of all house fires did not have a working smoke alarm.