House fire in Irthlingborough started after 'toddler had managed to turn the hob on'

'Double check appliances before leaving' warns firefighters to parents in Northamptonshire

Wednesday, 16th June 2021, 1:43 pm

Two fire crews were called to a house fire in Irthlingborough after a toddler had managed to switch on the hob before the occupants left their home.

The blaze took place yesterday afternoon (June 15) at 2.35pm when neighbours heard smoke alarms going off and noticed black smoke billowing out of the top floor of the empty house. They immediately called the fire service and crews from Irthlingborough and Wellingborough were deployed to the scene.

Red Watch commander at Wellingborough Fire Station, Ben Stone, said: "The homeowner had gone out and was unaware that a toddler had managed to turn the hob on [before they left home]. There were items such as a chopping board on top of it which of course then started the fire.

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The damage as a result of the blaze in the Irthlingborough home.
The damage as a result of the blaze in the Irthlingborough home.

“We would urge parents, if they have children who may like playing with switches or have previously tried to turn appliances on to double check appliances before leaving. It is also good to close doors as they will protect the rest of your house if a fire starts in one room.

“On this occasion due to the quick thinking of neighbours to call 999, and also because the homeowner had working smoke alarms that alerted those neighbours, we have been able to save the home.”

The Northampton Fire and Rescue Service urges residents who have smoke alarms to install them at every level and check them every month to see if they are working properly. They also advise residents to investigate if they hear a neighbour's smoke alarm.

These things could mean the difference between life or death.

If you see a fire, call the fire service immediately by dialling 999.