Police and fire officers are investigating a blaze at a council flat in Christchurch early today.
Southern Fire Communications shift manager Brent Dunn said firefighters were called to the Spreydon block of four flats about 4.10am.
Fire crews found a fire on the outside wall of a flat and a person suffering from smoke inhalation.
The injured person was treated by ambulance officers at the scene.
Dunn said the Spreydon fire was being treated as suspicious.
Police and fire investigators would return this morning to determine how the fire at the rental property started.