WHITEABBEY FAMILY’S LUCKY ESCAPE

Helen Bates and her two-year-old son, Reece with the badly burnt microwavable steriliser that went on fire in the kitchen of their Ypres Park home on Sunday night. INNT 04-071-FP
Helen Bates and her two-year-old son, Reece with the badly burnt microwavable steriliser that went on fire in the kitchen of their Ypres Park home on Sunday night. INNT 04-071-FP

A WHITEABBEY woman has told how she and her family had a lucky escape when a fire broke out in the kitchen of their Ypres Park home at the weekend.

Helen Bates was at home with her husband Alan and their two sons - two-year-old Reece and nine-week-old Taylor - on Sunday night (January 22) when the terrifying incident happened.

The couple believe a fault in a budget range microwave that they had purchased from a major retailer four days earlier was the cause of the fire, setting light to a microwavable bottle steriliser that they had used many times before.

“I was sterilising the baby’s bottles as I normally do at night-time as I make up the bottles before I go to bed. I’d put the steriliser and everything into the microwave and my husband was upstairs putting Reece to bed,” Helen explained.

“I’d put the microwave on and Taylor had started crying, so I went into the living room to sort him out. As I was trying to sort him out I thought I could smell smoke. When I went into the kitchen it was full of smoke and there was smoke and flames coming out of the microwave. The whole steriliser and the bottles were on fire so I had to shout on Alan. He came running down the stairs and actually had to carry it out the back and put the fire out.

“The whole room was full of smoke; it really frightened me. I’m so scared about what could have happened to the children. If I hadn’t have smelt the smoke, the whole place would have been up, it really would have,” she said.

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