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Saved by a smoke detector

PUBLISHED: 15:20 25 October 2001 | UPDATED: 10:45 03 March 2010

A FAMILY devastated by a blaze which ripped through their home were saved by a smoke detector, it was revealed today.

Fire broke out at 8.25pm last night in Kelly Road, Ipswich, and damaged most of the two-storey home.

A FAMILY devastated by a blaze which ripped through their home were saved by a smoke detector, it was revealed today.

Fire broke out at 8.25pm last night in Kelly Road, Ipswich, and damaged most of the two-storey home.

The blaze was caused by a candle being left unattended in an upstairs bedroom. Luckily the family heard the fire alarm and managed to escape before the house went up in flames.

It is thought two women and a child managed to find their way out of the smoke-logged and burning property and that a neighbour who saw the fierce flames called the fire brigade. Fire fighters then entered the property to deal with the fire, and also rescued the family's kitten from the flames.

Jamie Hilling, 24, had been staying at the address when he came back to find it devastated by a raging fire. He was outside comforting others who had been in the house at the time.

"I just came back from watching football and saw the street full of people and three fire engines. I realised where the fire was and I just saw smoke coming out every where. Everybody got out thankfully but there is so much stuff that is ruined."

Eyewitnesses said the windows smashed open and flames were leaping from the upstairs room with in a matter of minutes.

Today, as charred furniture lies ruined outside the property, neighbours told of the shock and the devastation left by the inferno.

Kathleen Byford, 74, lives next door to the scene of the fire.

"I am just so worried about all my things I have collected over the years. The young girl that lives there said she left a candle burning and now all this has happened. My property is joined and there is smoke damage everywhere."

Her tenant, Anthony Davey, said: "We've had to wash the wall down because the smoke came through the loft space and damaged the property.

"I don't know if we've lost anything but my landlady had to sleep downstairs because the smoke damage is bad."

Sub Officer Will Tell confirmed that the fire started in an upstairs bedroom.

"We were called to a fire in Kelly Road which had started in the bedroom. On our arrival flames were coming out of the windows. Nobody was in the building when we arrived and the cause was accidental.

"Much of the house has been destroyed and the intense heat has melted the plaster work on the walls.

"Three appliances attended, two from Princes Street and one from Colchester Road, six breathing apparatus and two hose reels were used.

"The fire service would like to reiterate the importance of smoke detectors which may have saved these people's lives."

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