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Woman lucky to survive Coburg Unit Fire

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22 Sep 2010
MFB Firefighters arrived to find flames issuing out of the front lounge room of a two bedroom, ground floor brick unit in Coburg.

Wearing breathing apparatus MFB Firefighters entered the premises to search for the reported missing female.

Fortunately, the woman in her mid 30’s had already escaped from her burning unit and had run through the fire, out the back door and gone for assistance to a neighbouring home. She had awoken from her sleep to find that her bed and bedroom was ablaze. (She has been transported to hospital with burns to her feet and arms).

The fire was caused by a heater making contact with bed linens.

The fire took 10 minutes to bring under control and MFB firefighters were able to stop the fire spreading into any of the other 13 units in the 2 storey block. The unit involved has sustained extensive damage.

Commander Colin Harris said that the lady was extremely lucky that she woke from her sleep in time to escape. Whilst she had a working smoke alarm in the kitchen, her bedroom door was closed, and it was not heard. A deadlocked front door also limited her access to exit the fire.

There are numerous fire safety warnings and reminders as a result of this fire.

- Never leave portable heaters unattended (or whilst sleeping).

- Keep toys, clothing and bedding at least 1 metre away from heaters.

- Never deadlock yourself INSIDE your home.

- A working smoke alarm should be fitted in any bedrooms where the occupant sleeps with the door closed.

TIME: 09:02 CALL No.: 6250


OFFICER - IN - CHARGE: Commander Colin Harris

ORIGINATOR: MFB Communications Controller – Heather Stockton

For more information please contact: MFB Media & Communications on 9665 4699 or

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The Australasian Fire and Emergency Services Authority Council (AFAC) recommends monthly testing of smoke alarms to ensure they are working correctly.

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