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Mothers and sons rescued from fire

PUBLISHED: 16:24 30 November 2001 | UPDATED: 10:56 03 March 2010

A MOTHER and her two sons were taken to hospital today, after a fire broke out in the bathroom of their Ipswich home.

Neighbours were alerted by the sound of smoke alarms at the Tyler Street house at about 7.

A MOTHER and her two sons were taken to hospital today, after a fire broke out in the bathroom of their Ipswich home.

Neighbours were alerted by the sound of smoke alarms at the Tyler Street house at about 7.20am.

Next door neighbour, Tanyia Bailey, said one of the young boys knocked on her door, and she opened it to see his face blackened by smoke.

She said: "His face was completely black. I'd heard the smoke alarms going off but thought it was an alarm clock."

She said that firefighters then arrived, followed by an ambulance.

Mrs Bailey said the mother, who is believed to be Maralyn Chaplin, had suffered burns to her arm after trying to extinguish the flames. But she added: "I don't think any of them were badly hurt."

Two crews of firefighters from Princes Street attended, and rescued three people from the fire, by 7.36am.

Smoke spread from the bathroom at the back of the house through the ground floor rooms.

Assistant divisional fire officer, Geoff Pyke said the fire was caused by a heater placed close to furniture.

He urged people to remember the safety rules, because every year 100 people die, and nearly 1,000 are injured in homes as a result of fires caused by heating appliances.

He said: "Portable heaters should always be switched off before going to bed, be properly serviced and maintained, be kept in ventilated rooms, and have permanent safety guards fitted.

"If they are permanent fixtures, they should be attached to the wall or floor so they can't be knocked over. They should not be moved while they are switched on, or placed too close to furniture like bedding or curtains, as happened in this case.

"People, especially older citizens, should not stand too close in case their clothing catches fire, use aerosols near the fire, or place it near unattended children or animals."

Mr Pyke praised the use of smoke alarms in the property, but added: "Although this was a small fire, it could have easily become a big fire very quickly.

"It is important for people to remember that as soon as they hear a smoke alarm, all occupants of the house need to make their escape from the building.

"With relatives visiting over Christmas, and the addition of presents and extra goods in homes, the dynamics of homes change and people need to make sure that everyone knows how to get out of the property."

A spokeswoman for the East Anglian Ambulance Station confirmed that two casualties had been taken to Ipswich Hospital suffering from smoke inhalation.

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