ARARAT - Ararat Fire Brigade took around 40 minutes to bring a blaze under control after fire broke out on the third storey of a business premises in Barkly Street early Friday morning.
A resident in the rear ground floor residence was alerted to the fire through smoke alarms and called the brigade at around 2.20am.
Twelve firefighters responded and when crews arrived they found a small fire on the top floor of the building with flames visible through the back window.
The fire was contained to the third storey room with only slight smoke and water damage to the remainder of the top floor.
Fire investigators believe the fire may have started in a clothes dryer.
In addition to Ararat Brigade appliances a protective equipment van from Bendigo also attended, while the State Emergency Service assisted by providing lighting.
Crews spent around three hours on scene mopping up.
Operations officer with District 16 of the CFA David Harris said the fire was a timely reminder about the value of working smoke alarms.
"They do alert people, as in this case," he said.
"We would also ask that people take care when drying material in clothes dryers, and that people remove the clothes when the drying cycle has finished.
"Check that there is no fire in the dryer."