103-year-old woman puts out blaze in Sweden

Stockholm  - Emergency services in the Swedish town Vastervik lauded a 103-year-old woman for acting "according to the rule book" when she put out a fire in an electric blanket, reports said Wednesday.

"When I sat on my bed, my bottom felt really hot. It also smelled like something was on fire and I discovered the mattress was burning," Ulla Lundback told the local Vasterviks-Tidningen about the incident on Monday.

Lundback, who lives on her own in the coastal town of Vastervik, 280 kilometres south of Stockholm, pulled out the electric plug and filled a water container that she poured over the smouldering bed, extinguishing the fire.

"Then she contacted the home help service office, using her wrist alarm. They alerted us and we set off for Ulla's flat," Mattias Skold of the fire services said.

Skold said when the fire brigade arrived, the fire was out and their main task was to air out the flat.

Lundback spent a night at a nursing home but did not suffer any injuries or any effects of smoke inhalation.

Skold said it was not uncommon that electric blankets catch fire and advised users to make sure they are kept in good condition.

Lundback became a widow in 1937. With the help of a son, she has been able to live on her own despite her advanced age.

"I will not get a new electric blanket. I think I'll have to make do with a regular hot water bottle," she said. (dpa)