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Family flees Burnley night blaze
FAMILIES were evacuated from their homes in the middle of the night when fire ripped through a roof.
Firefighters said the owners of the house where the blaze started had smoke alarms, but said the attic fire was ‘virtually undetectable’.
An eagle-eyed member of the family-of-six noticed a bathroom ceiling fan was overheating and 999 as a precaution.
When crews arrived at Albion Street in Burnley, the roof was on fire and smoke was spreading through the roofspace to neighbouring properties.
Firefighters were at the property from 2am until 8am yesterday. Most of the roof and the upper floor was destroyed.
A spokesman said they were able to save some furniture on the ground floor from smoke damage with plastic sheeting.
And they also covered the roof with plastic to prevent further damage to the family’s belongings.
Neighbours from three homes were evacuated for safety, including next door resident Catherine Barford and her baby.
She said: “I sleep in an attic room so when the fire service woke me up by banging on the door, I saw the smoke coming in and became quite worried.
“I was one of the last people to get out but when I came outside the other near neighbours were being evacuated too.
“The fire service were amazing. They did a brilliant job.”
Firefighters tackled the blaze for several hours using an aerial ladder platform.
Burnley watch manager Neil Ashworth said: “It was caused by an electrical fault and this is an incident where we would urge people to make sure their electrical appliances are working okay regularly, particularly when it is an item, like this ceiling fan, which affects the roof space “Though the family had smoke alarms, the fire had been smouldering away for some time up in the attic.
“Up there it was virtually undetectable. When it took hold it threatened neighbouring properties as it was in the roof space.
“Luckily, everyone had somewhere else they could go to. Most of the roof has been destroyed and the house is uninhabitable now.”
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