Preventing a potentially serious fire in a customer’s house has inspired one local care assistant to launch a fire safety campaign.
Charlotte Levett, who works for Bluebird Care Rother and Hastings, encountered the worrying scene when she visited a customer’s house in Hastings.
She said: “I have worked for Bluebird Care for two years and in care for a total of four years. It was caring for my Nan, who lived with my mum, that inspired me to think about a career in care.
“I visited my first customer of the day recently in Hastings and when I opened the door, there was a really funny smell coming from the kitchen. I can’t really describe it, but it definitely smelt like burning.
“I went into the kitchen and the whole room was full of smoke as the customer had left the hob on under an empty saucepan.
“I instinctively turned off the hob, put the saucepan outside and called the office to let them know about the incident. I then went to check the smoke alarm, as it had not gone off, and found that it was not working. As my customer has dementia, she would have been in even greater danger had I not visited that morning.”
Following on from the incident, Bluebird Care Rother and Hastings launched a fire safety campaign and appointed Charlene Rowley as fire safety champion. Charlene has been spending her time visiting all of Bluebird Care Rother and Hastings’ customers to test their smoke alarms and carry out fire risk assessments of their homes.
Where new batteries are required, the team are replacing these for free, and where there is the need for additional assessment, Bluebird Care has been making referrals to the local fire station, who have also been training the care team.
Registered manager of Bluebird Care Rother and Hastings, Karen Chandler, said: “We are all proud of Charlotte for not only being so calm in this recent situation but stepping up to help make sure we do our best to prevent a similar occurrence with any of our customers in the future. This is an excellent example of going above and beyond the call of duty and Charlotte potentially saved our customer’s life on that day.
“We now have a very strong relationship with our local fire station and are working closely with them for all current and new customers to ensure they remain safe.”