Pets perish in house fire

Fire engine
Fire engine

Several pets perished in a house fire caused by a chip pan blaze.

Firefighters were called by neighbours of a house on Lapwing Close, Heysham at 12.45am on November 28 who alerted them to the fire.

The fire had completely engulfed the ground floor of the property, where a woman and three children were trapped.

The fire had started in the kitchen as the woman had left the chip pan on and then become distracted.

On returning to the kitchen and finding the pan contents on fire she attempted to smother the fire with a damp cloth, this had little effect so she then threw a bowl of water onto the pan.

This had a devastating effect on the fire causing a large amount of flames which engulfed the kitchen.

Unable to extinguish the fire she woke the three children that were asleep upstairs and they escaped the house.

Two fire-fighters wearing breathing apparatus entered the house to tackle the fire located in the kitchen. This was extinguished and a thorough search of the house was carried out.

Neighbouring properties were also checked to ensure the fire and smoke had not spread.

In the house there were several pets which unfortunately perished in the fire although every effort was made by fire crews to save these.

A pet snake did survive the fire.

Morecambe crew manager Matthew Dorrington said: “This incident shows the devastating effect a fire can have, people should be reminded about the dangers of chip pans and leaving cooking unattended.

“Also tackling a fire is very dangerous, if water is put on a fire which contains oil as this chip pan did the end result is devastating, the water that is added sinks to the bottom of the pan and expands 1700 times forcing the oil and flames out of the pan and engulfing the entire kitchen.

“It is advised by the Fire Service to get out of the property as quickly and safely as possible, call the fire service and stay out until you have been told that it is safe to re-enter the property.

“All households should make sure that they have working smoke detectors, use this as a reminder to go and check yours.

For free home fire safety advice call 0800 1691125.