Smoker flees kitchen fire
A SMOKER found himself locked inside his burning home after a faulty cigarette lighter started a fire in the kitchen on Wednesday morning.
Firefighters were called to the blaze in Birches Head after the occupier discovered the fire shortly after putting out a cigarette.
But the man became trapped after realising he had left his house keys in the kitchen – where the flames had quickly spread.
Luckily the man's sister arrived to let him out of the house, on Acton Street, just as firefighers arrived.
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The man, who has not been named, escaped unharmed, although the kitchen was badly damaged.
Group manager Tim Hyde, of Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service, said: "We'd encourage smokers to purchase lighters from reputable shops and make sure the lighter is fully out before putting away.
"This incident was a near-miss and would have been worse had the man not been home at the time to hear the fire."