Fire crews praised after care home blaze

FIREFIGHTERS have been praised today after their quick response stopped a blaze seriously damaging a Woodbridge nursing home.Three elderly people were led to safety and two of them were taken to hospital after inhaling smoke during the fire at Grove Court nursing and residential home.

FIREFIGHTERS have been praised today after their quick response stopped a blaze seriously damaging a Woodbridge nursing home.

Three elderly people were led to safety and two of them were taken to hospital after inhaling smoke during the fire at Grove Court nursing and residential home.

The cause of the fire, which started in one of the 61 bedrooms at the Beech Way home after lunch, is under investigation.

Four fire crews from Woodbridge and Ipswich tackled the blaze at the nursing home, which has almost 60 residents.


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The firefighters were commended for their sensitivity in dealing with shocked residents and preventing the flames from taking hold of the large building.

There was also praised for the staff at the privately-owned home for the high standard of fire safety and the calm and efficient way in which they tackled the incident.

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Assistant Divisional Officer Dave Atkinson, of Suffolk Fire Service, said: "The corridor was smoke-logged due to the fact that the door to the room had been left open.

"We had four residents still inside the premises. Two were led to safety by fire crews, one was led to safety by a member of staff and one remained in their room due to the fact that they were bedridden.

"Two firefighters stayed with the person to make sure she was happy. She was two or three rooms away and the fire systems worked very well."

He added: "The quick reactions of Woodbridge and headquarters' crews need to be praised.

"They got here quickly, they got two people out quickly and they stopped the fire becoming a really serious blaze."

Mr Atkinson said crews were also able to contain the blaze within a small area because all the fire and smoke resistant doors had been closed by staff.

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Graham Smith said: "I'd like to praise crews attending this fire today and staff at Grove Court.

"We decided to check a sample of care homes in Suffolk following the devastating fire and tragic loss of life in Glasgow last year.

"We made sure that all the care homes inspected met fire safety standards and staff were briefed on what to do in the event of a fire.

"Today's was a textbook exercise in that respect and we are pleased that it was carried out so swiftly and efficiently."

Grove Court manager, RaphyPerez, said: "The cause of the fire is under investigation. A man and a woman aged 85 to 90 had a little smoke inhalation and they went to hospital for a check-up.

"This is the first real fire incident we have had here. We have a very robust prevention system, we check every week and at least twice a year we

have a fire officer here."

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