THREE people had to flee their home in the middle of the night after fire broke out.
The trio were alerted by a smoke alarm to a blaze raging in a utility room downstairs just after midnight on Saturday.
Two Hemel Hempstead fire engines rushed to the scene in Ellingham Road, Adeyfield.
Crew commander Paul Adams said: “The smoke detector alerted them, woke them and got them out of the house, then they called the fire brigade.
“We encourage people to test their smoke alarms and make sure their batteries are working.
“It was the early intervention that prevented the damage from being much worse.”
Mr Adams believes the fire was caused by a fridge freezer pressed up against a utility socket that may have pinched a wire. The cable and the back of the freezer were alight.
Firefighters left the scene at about 1am.