Family escapes burning house
A MOTHER and her two children had a lucky escape from fire in the early hours of Boxing Day. The family was forced to flee their home in the middle of the night after a burning candle set fire to a table-top Christmas tree. The family escaped fled their
A MOTHER and her two children had a lucky escape from fire in the early hours of Boxing Day.
The family was forced to flee their home in the middle of the night after a burning candle set fire to a table-top Christmas tree.
The family escaped fled their burning house in Falstaff Way, Hartford at 1.47am on Tuesday (December 26).
All three managed to escape uninjured. However, the youngest child, a two-year-old suffered smoke inhalation and was treated at the scene by paramedics.
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Describing the scene, Rob Allport, watch manager at Huntingdon Fire Station said: "There were bags of Christmas presents that were savaged from the house but a lot of the toys were left badly smoke damaged. It is a very sad case at this time of year to see such devastation. The room was black with smoke damage and there were Christmas tree lights still flashing on the floor."
The fire started in the front room and was caused by an unattended candle. It is believed the mother had got up in the night because the two-year-old was feeling unwell. She had left the child downstairs and was running a bath when the scented candle on the lounge table set fire to a small table-top Christmas tree. The child quickly raised the alarm and the mother woke her other child, a three-year-old and they all fled the house and phoned 999.
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There were two smoke alarms in the property but a fire brigade spokesman said one alarm had no battery and the other had the battery disconnected.
Mr Allport said: "The family were very lucky to escape unharmed as there were no smoke alarms to alert them. Had the fire not been spotted when it was, it could have been a far more serious incident. If all of them had been asleep, this could have been a very tragic case. It is the smoke that kills and without working smoke alarms the smoke would have quickly spread throughout the house making the rooms inhabitable and trapping the family upstairs. They were very lucky."
Firefighters spent more than two hours fighting the blaze and the entire living room was gutted by the blaze.
The victim support unit was called to assist the family has now been re-housed.
As a word of warning, Mr Allport urged residents to not leave candles unattended and to make sure their home has working smoke alarms.
He said: "A smoke alarm really can help to save your life. It cannot prevent a fire but it will give you an early warning that there is a fire so you and your family have time to escape and call the fire service. We offer free home fire safety checks to people where we will come and fit smoke alarms for free and assess your home for fire risks, offering advice on how to keep safe."
INFORMATION: To book a free home fire safety check, visit your nearest fire station or phone 01480 445800.