Firefighters praised for response to fatal Hethersett fire

Emergency services at Woodcote sheltered housing complex in Hethersett after the fire in one of the

Emergency services at Woodcote sheltered housing complex in Hethersett after the fire in one of the residents home. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY - Credit: SIMON FINLAY

Praise has been heaped on the quick response of emergency crews after firefighters rushed to a deadly fire.

Within 10 minutes of an alarm going off, the crews from four fire stations had rescued a woman from a burning flat in a sheltered accommodation complex in Hethersett.

The woman, whose identity has not yet been confirmed, died from her injuries despite East of England Ambulance Service taking her to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital.

The incident happened at around 7pm on Friday at the Woodcote complex, on Firs Road.

Crews from Hethersett, Carrow, Wymondham and Earlham fire stations were called to the scene.

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Michael Newey, chief executive of Broadland Housing Association, which runs 56 flats at the complex, said : 'I'm very grateful for the efforts of the fire crews. I would also like to offer our tremendous sympathy to the lady's family.'

He said it was the first time to his knowledge that a person had died from a fire in the sheltered accommodation.

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The fire was contained inside the woman's flat and officers from the fire service have been investigating the cause of the blaze over the weekend.

'I would like to assure residents that all the electrical, gas, and fire safety certificates were up to date,' Mr Newey said.

Station manager Scott Norman, from the Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service, said: 'There was a well-developed fire and we had to rescue a lady from a flat in the sheltered accommodation.

'The crews did a fantastic job of giving her the very best chance of survival.'

A spokesman for the ambulance service said: 'We were called to a report of a woman who was unconscious and not breathing. An ambulance crew, rapid response vehicle and ambulance officer attended.

'They treated a woman, who was in cardiac arrest, and was taken to Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital in a life-threatening condition.'

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