An elderly couple escaped from their flat after being woken by a smoke alarm when their dishwasher caught fire in the early hours of Christmas Day.
West Sussex Fire and Rescue said the Worthing couple had put the dishwasher on before going to bed but it caught fire and filled the flat with smoke.
Firefighters were called out just before 0200 GMT. The couple were given oxygen and taken to Worthing Hospital.
Firefighters said the smoke alarm had saved the couple's lives.
Two people in a neighbouring flat had to be led to safety.
Firefighters soon brought the fire under control but the couple's flat in Grand Avenue was badly damaged.
Watch commander Darren Wickings said: "We urge everyone not to switch on washing machines, dishwashers or tumble driers when going out or going to bed."