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Huge fire sparked by cigarette leaves family of three homeless

PUBLISHED: 14:54 09 May 2020 | UPDATED: 14:55 09 May 2020

Firefighters tackled the blaze in Coulsdon Close, Clacton (stock image) Picture: NICK BUTCHER

Firefighters tackled the blaze in Coulsdon Close, Clacton (stock image) Picture: NICK BUTCHER

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A family has been left homeless after a huge fire tore through a two-storey house.

Firefighters have told how the blaze quickly spread through the home in Coulsdon Close, Clacton.

Crews from Frinton, Weeley, Clacton and Colchester were called to the scene after the fire broke out on the first floor.

When they arrived firefighters were faced with flames which were spreading fast into the roof.

“The spread of fire was fast, but the hard work and professionalism of the crews stopped it spreading to the neighbouring property,” said incident commander Ian Street.

“Within 10 minutes of us arriving it was clear the building was becoming structurally unsafe for our firefighters to be inside, so we requested the assistance of an aerial ladder platform to allow us to tackle the fire from above.”

The fire was put out by 1.40pm yesterday, leaving the house completely destroyed and a family of three homeless.

An investigation found the fire had been caused by a cigarette in the bedroom.

Stuart Hare, station manager for Clacton, Frinton and Weeley, added: “It’s staggering to see the damage one cigarette can do to a whole house.

“Please, if you smoke in your home, never smoke in bed, use a proper ashtray and never leave lit cigarettes unattended.

“And of course, always make sure cigarettes are fully extinguished and completely cool before you dispose of them.”

The family had inhaled some smoke and were treated by ambulance crews.


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