Fire guts Abbott Street flat

Firefighters attack the blaze in Abbott St yesterday evening. Picture by Debbie Gregory

A WOMAN and her young children escaped unhurt from their blazing flat in Abbott Street last night but lost everything they owned in the fire that gutted their home.

The two-bedroom flat was fully involved when Fire and Emergency NZ arrived at 5.30pm. The fire had flashed over and fully erupted inside, said Station Officer Chris Grimson.

“There were flames coming out of every window.”

SO Grimson said the woman’s son alerted her to the fire.

“When the mother saw the flames and smoke she got herself and her children out of the flat. No one was injured.”

The flat was separated from the adjoining flat by a concrete fire wall.

“Fortunately, that fire wall provided fire protection and the adjoining flat suffered only minor smoke damage.”

SO Grimson said it took the fire crews about 10 minutes to subdue the flames enough for them get inside.

“We made an external attack on the fire at first and once we had knocked the fire back a bit, we were able to enter the flat.

“It has been severely fire-damaged in its entirety. The mum and her children have lost everything they owned. They spent last night with family and so did the people who lived in the adjoining flat.”

The fire originated in the kitchen as a result of unattended cooking.

“People have just got to get our constant message that they have to keep watching their food while they are cooking it.”

Last night’s blaze was the fifth unattended cooking-related fire in Gisborne since the start of the year.

A WOMAN and her young children escaped unhurt from their blazing flat in Abbott Street last night but lost everything they owned in the fire that gutted their home.

The two-bedroom flat was fully involved when Fire and Emergency NZ arrived at 5.30pm. The fire had flashed over and fully erupted inside, said Station Officer Chris Grimson.

“There were flames coming out of every window.”

SO Grimson said the woman’s son alerted her to the fire.

“When the mother saw the flames and smoke she got herself and her children out of the flat. No one was injured.”

The flat was separated from the adjoining flat by a concrete fire wall.

“Fortunately, that fire wall provided fire protection and the adjoining flat suffered only minor smoke damage.”

SO Grimson said it took the fire crews about 10 minutes to subdue the flames enough for them get inside.

“We made an external attack on the fire at first and once we had knocked the fire back a bit, we were able to enter the flat.

“It has been severely fire-damaged in its entirety. The mum and her children have lost everything they owned. They spent last night with family and so did the people who lived in the adjoining flat.”

The fire originated in the kitchen as a result of unattended cooking.

“People have just got to get our constant message that they have to keep watching their food while they are cooking it.”

Last night’s blaze was the fifth unattended cooking-related fire in Gisborne since the start of the year.

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