Passersby save woman and baby from burning building in Stoke Newington

A woman and a baby boy were rescued from a burning building by members of the public in Stoke Newington this afternoon, while fire crews saved two other children and another adult managed to escape unaided.

Passersby used ladders from a nearby building site to get to the woman and child through the window of a smoke-filled flat above a blazing takeaway restaurant in Stoke Newington High Street.

Crews from Stoke Newington fire station arrived on the scene shortly afterwards and rescued two boys, who are believed to be aged six and ten. A man also escaped from the ground floor restaurant.

All five people, who are thought to belong to the same family, were taken to hospital.

The fire damaged part of the restaurant, as well as part of the shop’s ducting which runs from the ground to the first floor.

Station manager Richard Knighton, who was at the scene, said: “Crews worked hard to bring the flames under control and managed to prevent the fire from damaging the flat above the takeaway shop.

“The family were all taken to Homerton Hospital to be checked over, but fortunately no one seemed to be badly hurt.

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“I’m sure they’ll be extremely grateful that some passersby had the presence of mind to grab some ladders and rescue them from the smoke-filled building.”

There were no smoke alarms inside the building, and Mr Knighton added: “Smoke alarms save lives as they give you a vital early warning if a fire breaks out in your home. If you’ve not got a smoke alarm, I’d urge you to get one today, you never know when fire might strike.”

Four fire engines and around 20 firefighters from Kingsland, Stoke Newington and Holloway fire stations attended the scene after they were called out just after 1pm, and the blaze was under control by 1.40pm.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.