Dame Joan Collins tells of the horrifying moment she realised she was caught up in a fire at home


Dame Joan Collins has spoken about the terrifying moment that she realised her home was on fire, and about the blaze that could have killed her.

The actress and author had been relaxing at home with her husband Percy Gibson when they discovered the fire at their apartment, and in an interview with Good Morning Britain Collins was still suffering with a cough from the smoke inhalation.

Explaining what had happened, she said: “It was more than scary.

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“It was Saturday afternoon and we could have gone to a movie, but because I wasn’t feeling too well, I had jet lag, and we were lying on the bed watching a movie.

“There was a beeping on the screen and Percy said no, that’s not a beeping on the screen. It was our smoke alarm.

“We went outside, and believe me, I’m not exaggerating, there was two feet of smoke from the ceiling and it was in the guest bathroom at the end of the corridor.”

Collins said that her husband’s quick actions had stopped the outcome of the fire being much worse.

She said: “There were flames on the curtains and Percy grabbed the fire extinguisher. Everybody should have one, and a smoke alarm – if we hadn’t we would have been gone.

“When the fire brigade came, they said you’ve been very lucky that you’ve got it so early and your husband put out the main flame.

“The smoke was unbelievable.”

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Collins, who had only just been able to move back into the apartment after a year of repairs from flooding from the flat upstairs, said that the fire had been caused by a mirror on the windowsill catching the sun.

She said: “One of the fire people said to me that this happens a lot.”

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However, there was a happy ending for Collins as not only did she and Gibson escape the fire, but they were also reunited with the fire brigade team who saved them.

The firefighters made a surprise appearance on GMB where Collins thanked them and they offered fire safety advice.