A COUPLE have been left devastated after a fire gutted a room in their home.

Firefighters say the simple action of closing doors saved the property in Carleton Close, Carlisle, from being destroyed.

Fire crews from both Carlisle’s east and west stations responded to a 999 call to a semi-detached property just off Carleton Road, at about 10.45am yesterday.

They discovered the blaze had taken hold of an upstairs bedroom, leaving it heavily smoke-logged.

Homeowner Josh Waite praised fire crews and said: “We had just finished decorating and had the carpets laid. We’re devastated it has happened so close to Christmas.

“The bedroom is gutted and the bathroom is ruined. I’m shocked by the damage.

“It could have been worse. No-one was injured. We were out and if it wasn’t for our neighbour I don’t know what would have happened. He could see smoke coming out of the back window and called the firemen.

“My wife always closes the doors, which helped stop the fire spreading. I just hope our sentimental items are OK.”

It took four firefighters wearing breathing apparatus to put out the flames, using two hose reels, a thermal imaging camera, a positive pressure ventilation fan and various small tools.

A spokesman for Carlisle east fire station said: “Crews then cut away at the heavily fire damaged areas, to make sure there were no hidden embers.”

While the fire has gutted the bedroom where it began, Cumbria County Fire and Rescue Service is now using the incident to highlight how simple measures can prevent flames spreading - and in this instance, stopped the whole house being destroyed.

The occupants had shut the bedroom door, meaning the blaze remained in the room.

Firefighters have now released images showing the inside of the bedroom door, and the outside.

The fire service spokesman continued: “Although there was heavy smoke logging throughout the upstairs of the property, the photos show the importance of closing doors at night, and when you leave the house.

“A basic wooden door has managed to contain the worst of the fire, and has been the difference between one room being destroyed by fire, and the whole house being destroyed.”

Fortunately nobody was in the property when the fire broke out, and nobody was hurt during the incident.

For more fire safety advice and how to keep your family safe, visit www.cumbria.gov.uk/cumbriafire/services/safetyathome/