A boy has been praised for raising the alarm when he spotted a bungalow on fire.
Firefighters received a call after Luke Quinn, 12, spotted smoke in Kingsbury Close, Marks Tey on his way home from school.
Luke had watched a fire safety presentation at Honywood Community Science School in Coggeshall earlier the same day.
His mum, Kay Quinn, 46, of Proctor Way, said: “I’m immensely proud of him.
“They had just done a course and it just highlighted the dangers of fire to him.
“He had just got off the school bus and he heard the smoke alarm going off.
“It was just around the corner from where we live and he came straight home to tell me.’”
Two crews from Colchester fire station attended the scene on Monday at 4pm and extinguished the blaze in 20 minutes.
No-one was in the bungalow.
* Essex County Fire and Rescue Service’s schools team delivers safety lessons to 20,000 children a year.
Luke watched a Year 7 presentation called Heat of the Moment - designed to reduce the incidence of hoax calls and arson.
It also runs a programme for Year 3 pupils.
The presentations are free and can be booked by calling 01376 576000 or visiting essex-fire.gov.uk to arrange a booking.