THIS was the scene of devastation after a family’s home was engulfed in a horrific blaze sparked by an e-cigarette.
Victoria Newton, 34, and her three children are “lucky to be alive” but have been left with this terrible mess after the electronic cigarette blew up when it was left plugged in.
She was at home with four-year-old son Dylan and daughters Millie-Anne, nine, and Lauren, 13, when the blaze ripped through their semi-detached home on Saturday, killing their neighbour’s cat in the process.
Victoria, who has been left homeless by the blaze, said: “It was a nightmare. My daughter Lauren had some friends round and one of her mates had plugged in her e-cigarette and they’d gone out playing. About 15 minutes later, I was doing housework and I heard this crackling noise coming from Lauren’s bedroom.
“I didn’t know what it was and when I reached the landing I just remember this huge bang and I was thrown to the floor by the force of it. It had been left on the floor and the explosion sent it flying across the room and it ended up under Lauren’s bed.
“I was crawling around and when I looked I couldn’t believe my eyes. There was smoke everywhere and the room was on fire.
“The force of the blast had blown out all the bedroom windows and blown the door off the hinges. I couldn’t breathe and my instinct was just to grab Dylan and get out.”
Victoria says her two daughters were in the front garden playing when she ran outside covered in soot carrying her four-year-old son. Her neighbour’s cat Tinker, who was in the house at the time, sadly died in the blaze.
Victoria said: “My first thought was to make sure my kids were safe. My son was screaming and when my girls saw us run outside they heard me shouting ‘fire’ and they burst into tears.
“I thought the cat was in the house so I left Dylan outside and I ran back in but I couldn’t see or breathe because there was so much smoke. It’s awful that Tinker died but I’m grateful it wasn’t my kids. It could have been so much worse though.”
Victoria hopes the ordeal will act as a warning to others.