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Hadleigh man escapes house fire

PUBLISHED: 14:00 05 September 2001 | UPDATED: 10:29 03 March 2010

A DISABLED Hadleigh man today praised the actions of quick thinking neighbours after they had spotted smoke pouring from a bedroom window of his home and launched a rescue bid.

A DISABLED Hadleigh man today praised the actions of quick thinking neighbours after they had spotted smoke pouring from a bedroom window of his home and launched a rescue bid.

Believing Rodney East, 55, could be trapped inside his Pykenham Way home, brave neighbour Danny Candy smashed a door panel and began searching the two-storey home.

Mr East, who walks with the aid of crutches following a car accident six years ago, was babysitting for a relative on the other side of town at the time of the blaze, which happened shortly after 2pm yesterday.

"When I came back the fire engine was here and the firemen were upstairs and we weren't allowed in," he said.

"There was a lot of smoke and I was in shock and didn't know what to do. It was a horrible experience and I wouldn't wish it on anybody. But luckily the bedroom door was shut so the smoke damage is contained to that room."

Mr East's son Aron, 20, lost all his clothes, bedding and some electrical equipment to smoke damage in the blaze.

Nobody was in the house at the time of the fire.

Fire officers from Hadleigh station at the scene told Mr East that they believed the blaze was caused by an electrical fault, possibly a spark from a mobile phone recharger.

Mum of four, Candy Bugg, who lives opposite Mr East said: "We saw smoke coming out of the window. We called through the letterbox but couldn't get any answer. Knowing how Rodney was on crutches, we thought if he was in there and had fallen asleep with the smoke, he might have been in danger.

"My son got in and checked the house. My husband called the fire brigade, then I called his family and told them what was happening."

Elsewhere Suffolk fire crews tackled four fires in Ipswich and Stowmarket.

The first incident at just after 5pm yesterday occurred at St Joseph's School in Belstead Road, Ipswich. A Princes Street crew from the town put out a car fire at the premises.

Just minutes later a Stowmarket crew was called to a paper bank fire at the Asda superstore on Wilkes Way and the Meadow Centre.

Just before 6.30pm, an Ipswich fire crew were called to a skip fire on Chantry Park, at the London Road end.

And at 11.37pm, firefighters attended a car fire at Narey's Garden Centre, Bury Road, Stowmarket.

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