A YOUNG girl managed to raise the alarm after a fire broke out in the house where she was being looked after.

The youngster was at the property in Southampton when she told her childminder that she could smell smoke.

After discovering a fire had started in an upstairs bedroom, the childminder fled the house with the girl and another youngster, both thought to be pre-school age, who she was looking after.

Meanwhile, a man who had been upstairs painting in the house tried unsuccessfully to tackle the fire by using a jug of water before being beaten back by the intense heat and smoke.

The 35-year-old was later taken to hospital suffering from smoke inhalation.

Firefighters from Redbridge and St Mary's were deployed to the home in Mayflower Road in the Shirley area of the city just before 6pm on Monday and extinguished the fire within half an hour.

Crew manager Chris Rashleigh from Hightown urged the public not to attempt to tackle fires themselves. He said: “Our advice is always to just get out and call us out. Never attempt to extinguish a fire yourself, if possible just close the door to the room where the seat of the fire is and call us immediately.

“There was a great deal of smoke caused by this fire and as a result a person was taken to hospital after staying in the house as he tried to put it out.”

An investigation is underway into the cause of the fire. Initial inquiries have found it is likely to have started by a carelessly discarded cigarette.