Home News Scots family flee blaze after phone call from neighbour to say home was on fire

Scots family flee blaze after phone call from neighbour to say home was on fire


A Scottish family residing in Tranent, East Lothian, experienced a terrifying escape from a devastating fire at their home, thanks to an alert from a neighbour. The family, consisting of Vince Kerr, his wife Amanda and their 16-year-old son, were abruptly awakened from their sleep by a phone call informing them of a fire that had begun to ascend the exterior wall of the Chinese restaurant below their residence. The incident occurred early on Wednesday, March 6.

Vince remarked that they were unable to hear any fire alarms from the restaurant below; their own smoke alarms only began sounding after they received the phone call. The 57-year-old further recounted to Edinburgh Live how his friend had woken him up after hearing a bang, which turned out to be an oil drum exploding. Flames were reaching the side of their building and onto their balcony by the time he woke up. He expressed their luck in receiving the call and getting out in time; otherwise, the situation could have been much worse.

Images capturing the harrowing incident show the fire climbing from the outside of the kitchen area of the takeaway and onto Vince’s balcony, with a severe plume of black smoke ascending into the sky. Another image, taken after the fire was put out, depicted firefighters inspecting the building.

Vince praised the speed and efficiency of the fire crews who reached the scene rapidly. He revealed that their house filled with smoke as they made their escape. His comments included: “I never heard a fire alarm and only heard ours sounding after we were woken up by the phone call at 5.55am. The fire service told us that the fire started at 5.30am and that a series of cardboard boxes and oil drums had been set alight.”

After initially noticing the flames, the family’s main concern was that the takeaway below them might collapse under the engulfing fire. Vince recounted that firefighters had to cut into a part of the roof and shatter the restaurant bathroom window for access to douse the flames.

Fortunately, the family was allowed back in after the fire was extinguished, to air out their flat. However, the strong smell of smoke remarkably persisted. Vince emphasized how the consequences could have been much graver.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service affirmed that they received the call at 5.55am and promptly dispatched two fire engines to tackle the blaze.

The harrowing incident is yet another reminder of how alert neighbours, prompt responsiveness, and effective fire services can make a significant difference during such perilous occurrences. Life can be unpredictable, and staying ready for unforeseen incidents such as this one creates a safer environment for everyone.

An update from other authorities, including Police Scotland, has not been received thus far regarding the incident. Remember to stay updated about similar incidents and other important local news from Glasgow – sign up to our daily newsletter.

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