Published: 08:23, 07 November 2012 |
Updated: 09:43, 10 January 2014
A mother who fled a house fire with her three children says she has been left in utter shock and disbelief that a candle could cause so much damage.
Examining the aftermath this morning, Amanda McLaren, 38, said: “It’s like I’m looking at someone else’s life, someone else’s house.
“I am completely gobsmacked at how quickly it all happened. Thank God everyone is alive and safe.”
Two fire engines and 11 firefighters were called to the house in Bushy Royds, South Willesborough at 7.55pm last night.
The fire started in the living room after an unattended candle on the mantelpiece set alight a wall-mounted television above it.
Amanda said: “I popped upstairs to put my eldest to bed at 7.30pm, and I had a quick wash. When I came down the stairs I thought ‘that candle looks a bit fierce’. I then realised the TV was on fire.
“I had no idea what to do. I ran into the kitchen to grab a tea towel to try and put the flames out.”
It only took Amanda seconds to realise that the fire was too big for her to extinguish, so she called 999, and then ran upstairs to rescue her three children.
The two youngest, William, two, and James, one, were asleep in the nursery, which is above the living room.
Amanda, who works as a Slimming World consultant, said: “I got the two babies out first, put them in the car, and then ran back in to get my four-year-old, George.
“After making sure all three children were safe I ran back into the house again to shut the doors.
“It felt like forever before the fire crews turned up, even though it was probably only five minutes. I think I was in shock”
"i am completely gobsmacked at how quickly it all happened. thank god everyone is alive and safe" – mum amanda mclarenEven the family cat, Jasmin (pictured), didn't escape unscathed - it got covered in soot from the fire.
Two firefighters wearing breathing apparatus entered the house and put the fire out. A search was carried out and all the windows were opened to allow for ventilation.
An ambulance from the South East Heart Team also attended, but no one needed assistance.
Amanda said: “When I tried to put the fire out I burnt my fingers, but adrenaline had kicked in so I didn’t even think to tell the ambulance about it.
“When I was allowed back in the house, I was in disbelief at how bad the damage was – just from a candle.
“This might make other people think twice about leaving a candle unattended.”
Fire crews were at the scene for just over an hour.
Watch manager Jim Sanderson, from Ashford’s Blue Watch, said: “We would like to get two very important messages across. Please don’t leave candles unattended, even if it is only for a few minutes.
“Also if you have a fire in your house, don’t try and put it out yourself, and don’t delay getting out; just get out and stay out.”
Every morning at 10am we play you an hour of tunes from the 90s. We call it, #WeLoveThe90s.
Play 'Say It' with Garry and Laura on kmfm Breakfast and you could win £1,000!
Wake up to kmfm Breakfast with Garry and Laura - it's Kent's alarm call.
A guide for your future. For year 11 students in Kent and Medway. Click here for the e-edition.
Education, Training & Childcare is a special supplement published by KM Media Group four times a year. Click here for latest e-edition.
This is a brand new online resource covering every aspect of owning and improving a home in Kent and Medway.
Get the latest food and drink news, recipes from some of the nation's top chefs plus updates from Kent's vineyards and breweries.
Search in your local area to find your perfect partner in Kent, with FreshStart Dating! PLUS, register for free!.
Neil Miller, Hever Castle head gardener is new gardening blogger.
Buy pictures that you've seen in a KM newspaper, or send in a picture and we will place it on our photo sales website so that you can purchase a super, unique gift.