Man dies in fire despite rescue bid

AN ELDERLY man's wife and neighbours struggled in vain to save his life after he was caught in a house fire.The 85-year-old man was pulled from the blaze in Sharpington Close, Chelmsford, after his wife returned home, opened their front door and was confronted by a wall of smoke.

By Roddy Ashworth

AN ELDERLY man's wife and neighbours struggled in vain to save his life after he was caught in a house fire.

The 85-year-old man was pulled from the blaze in Sharpington Close, Chelmsford, after his wife returned home, opened their front door and was confronted by a wall of smoke.

She managed to enter the building alongside neighbours and her husband - who had mobility problems - was discovered in the dining room on the ground floor.


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The emergency services were alerted to the incident at around 3.15pm yesterday and fire and ambulance crews were dispatched.

When the first fire engine arrived, the man was lying unconscious in the front garden of the premises. Immediately firefighters began to resuscitate the pensioner.

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Paramedics continued the treatment but, despite everyone's best efforts, nothing could be done to save the man.

Eddie Brennan, the fire officer in charge of the incident, said: “Initial investigations show that the fire started in the kitchen, which was severely damaged.

“Because there were doors left open the whole house suffered smoke damage.”

He added that there were no smoke alarms on the premises.

The man's wife and two adult children were left homeless after the fire and were being helped by members of the Red Cross.

Ambulance manager Stuart Berlyn said: “The man had been taken from the house by his wife and a neighbour.

“Fire crews began carrying out CPR on him, and when we arrived we worked with them to continue the resuscitation efforts.

“There was excellent teamwork between the two services, but sadly despite our best efforts the man could not be saved and was confirmed dead at the scene.”

n A 65-year-old man was rescued by firefighters after a bungalow caught fire in Allenbrook Road, Colchester, yesterday afternoon.

The man suffered from smoke inhalation in the blaze, which began shortly after 4pm.

He was treated by paramedics at the scene and taken to Colchester General Hospital.

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